08/28/2012

Syria wants Respect for its National Sovereignty

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PROVINCES, (SANA)- Authorities in Aleppo on Tuesday carried out a qualitative operation in al-Bandara neighborhood and inflicted heavy losses upon the mercenary terrorists

DAMASCUS COUNTRYSIDE, (SANA) – A car bomb (a taxi) on Tuesday blew up in Tishreen neighborhood in Jaramana city, Damascus Countryside, during the escorting of two martyrs who were killed in the previous day in a terrorist blast in the city

LATTAKIA, (SANA)-Terrorist Alaa Khaled Deib admitted that he tried to kill a citizen at Souk al-Bala in Lattakia and opened fire at the people, injuring three civilians.

PROVINCES, (SANA)_ Units of the armed forces on Sunday clashed with terrorists, causing them heavy losses in different parts of Aleppo and its countryside..

PROVINCES, (SANA)- The armed forces set an ambushin al-Jandoul and al-Jesser roundabout in the city of Aleppo killing a number of terrorists and destroying 7 cars equipped with DShK machineguns and a bus for the terrorists

PROVINCES, (SANA)- The armed forces on Friday continued to pursue terrorist groups in some neighborhoods of Aleppo and in its countryside, carrying out several operations resulting in heavy losses in personnel and equipment among terrorists

PROVINCES, (SANA)- Units from the armed forces on Wednesday continued conducting qualitative operations against the armed terrorist groups in a number of areas and neighborhoods in Aleppo

PROVINCES, (SANA)- The armed forces continued on Thursday in cooperation with the people of Aleppo city pursuing the armed terrorist groups in the neighborhoods of the city of Aleppo and its countryside...

TUNIS, (SANA) – A number of leaders and members of Tunisian salafi groups are receiving money on regular basis from Europe via money orders, Tunisian Tanit Press newspaper said on its website.

PROVINCES, (SANA) – The armed forces are severely hitting the mercenary terrorists in a number of neighborhoods in the city of Aleppo in a continued process to eliminate the armed terrorist groups in the province  

GOVERNORATES, (SANA)_The competent authorities continued cleaning Seif al-Dawla neighborhood in Aleppo of the terrorists, inflicting heavy losses on them..

MOSCOW, (SANA) – Russian newspaper of Kommersant said that the current Libyan authorities are sending weapons, including Igla anti-air missiles, to the so-called 'free army' militia in Syria through Tripoli port in Lebanon...

DAMASCUS, (SANA) – Terrorist Sabah Othman confessed to working with armed terrorist groups in Douma, Damascus Countryside, and being an accomplice to the abduction, torture and murder of women, with her acting as an interrogator...

PROVINCES, (SANA)- The Syrian armed forces continued pursuing the terrorists mercenaries who intimidated the civilians in a number of neighborhoods in the city of Aleppo

PROVINCES, (SANA)- A unit from the armed forces on Friday carried out a "qualitative operation" against armed terrorist groups near the Cultural Center in Hanano area in the city of Aleppo inflicting heavy losses upon their members..

HOMS, (SANA)- The authorities on Friday released 75 detainees in the city of  Homs who got involved in the events taking place in the country but whose hands are clear of the Syrians' blood...

DAMASCUS, (SANA) – Qussai al-Yousef, a student at the Engineering Faculty at Aleppo University, related the details of his abduction by a terrorist group whose members forced him to record videos announcing his joining the so-called "free army" as a prelude for using his name after reporting his death...

PROVINCES, (SANA) - The security authorities on Thursday repelled an armed terrorist group which tried to enter al-Sabaa Bahrat area from al-Atmeh Souq in the city of Aleppo...

DAMASCUS, (SANA)- The armed forces freed in a "qualitative operation" the team of the Syrian al-Ikhbariya satellite channel who were kidnapped by an armed terrorist group seven days ago in al-Tal area in Damascus Countryside

http://sana.sy/eng/337/index.htm

'Chemical weapons threat'

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The U.S. government can better keep her mouth on chemical weapons...

Photo: Victim of Agent Orange, Vietnam

18:45 Posted by Universal in chemical weapons threat, Syria | Permalink | Comments (0) |  Facebook |

08/18/2012

Diplomacy: UN Envoy to Syria...

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It is clear that Russia, China and an increasing number of independent countries do not longer like the American war propaganda and the colonial wars, as during the french-british colonial era.

In the modern world there is no place anymore for colonization.

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Russia and China Welcomes Appointment of Brahimi as UN Envoy to Syria

Aug 18, 2012 -  MOSCOW/ BEIJING, (SANA) - Russia welcomed the appointment of the former Algerian Foreign Minister, Lakhadr Brahimi, as the UN new envoy to Syria succeeding Kofi Annan.

Russia Today TV quoted the Russian Foreign Ministry as saying in a statement on Saturday that "Moscow welcomed appointing Lakhadr Brahimi as the UN envoy to Syria," adding that Brahimi is known as a veteran diplomat and someone with a great experience in peace missions.

The statement cited Brahimi's chairmanship of UN missions in Afghanistan, Iraq and Haiti.

The Russian Foreign Ministry said it expects that Brahimi will base his work on the plan of his predecessor Kofi Annan, the agreements reached at the Action Group meeting in Geneva and the relevant UN Security Council resolutions.

It expressed hope that contacts continue with all the parties in Syria and work goes on for stopping the violence as soon as possible and starting political dialogue, affirming Russia's readiness for cooperation with the new envoy towards bringing the crisis in Syria to an end.

Meanwhile, Russia expressed hope that Brahimi will participate in the forthcoming meeting of the international Action Group on Syria which was delayed on the request of the Western countries after it was scheduled on Friday.

Russia Today website quoted Russia's U.N. Ambassador Vitaly Churkin as saying in statements in New York on Friday that the meeting of the Action Group on Syria was scheduled to discuss a draft statement that set up a certain point of time for all the Syrian sides to end violence and start dialogue.

Churkin pointed out that some members of the group showed readiness to attend the meeting and discuss our document while the Western members said they are not ready citing different pretexts and reasons.

The Action Group on Syria was scheduled to hold a meeting on the ambassadors level at the UN with participation of Russia, China, Britain, US, France, Turkey, Iraq, Kuwait, Qatar and the European Union.

China Hopes Lakhdar Brahimi Continues Efforts to Resolve Crisis in Syria through Political Means

China hoped that the new UN Envoy to Syria Lakhdar Brahimi continue resolving the crisis in Syria through political means, implement the plan of his predecessor Kofi Annan and Geneva recommendations to push towards a peaceful, just solution.

"China welcomes appointing the Algerian former Foreign Minister as a successor of Annan .. and hopes that he continues solving the crisis in Syria through political way.. Beijing also urges all sides concerned to stop violence," Chinese Foreign Ministry Spokesman Qin Gang said on Saturday.

Xinhua quoted Qin as saying at a press conference in response to a question "China will effectively cooperate and back Brahimi efforts for a political mediation in this regard.

http://sana.sy/eng/22/2012/08/18/437028.htm

Washington that bombs the world daily with its colonial war propaganda, is regularly blocking the website of SANA.  http://www.sana.sy/index_eng.html: 'This web page is not available'

Syria and Egypt: fighting colonialism...

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President Gamal Abdel Nasser

Gamal Abdel Nasser Hussein (Arabicجمال عبد الناصر حسين‎  15 January 1918 – 28 September 1970) was the second President of Egypt from 1956 until his death. A colonel in the Egyptian army, Nasser led the Egyptian Revolution of 1952 along with Muhammad Naguib, the first president, which overthrew the monarchy of Egypt and Sudan, and heralded a new period of modernization, and socialist reform in Egypt together with a profound advancement of pan-Arab nationalism, including a short-lived union with Syria.

Nasser was keen to see Egypt free of any overtones of colonialism. 

The most obvious source of a foreign power being dominant in Egypt was the British/French control of the Suez Canal. Completed in 1869, the canal was designed by Ferdinand de Lesseps. However the vast bulk of the physical labour required to build this engineering marvel was done by Egyptian nationals. Britain had a 40% holding in the company that ran the canal. However, despite the fact that the canal was on Egyptian ‘soil’, the benefits it brought the people of Egypt were minimal.

Under his leadership, Egypt nationalized the Suez Canal Company and came to play a central role in anti-imperialist efforts in the Arab World and Africa.

To support his beliefs, Nasser did what he could to restore national pride to all Arab nations – not just Egypt.

Many in the general Arab population still view Nasser as a symbol of Arab dignity and freedom.

http://nasser.bibalex.org/Common/pictures01-%20sira_en.htm

http://www.arabicnews.com/ansub/Daily/Day/000928/20000928...

http://www.historylearningsite.co.uk/gamal_abdel_nasser.htm

08/08/2012

Ahmadinejad: 'Political Solutions Based on Syrian People's Interests'

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Ahmadinejad: Only Way out of Crisis in Syria is Through Political Solutions Based on Syrian People's Interests

August 8, 2012 - TEHRAN, (SANA) – Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad stressed the need to resolve the crisis in Syria through political solutions based on the interests of the Syrian People.

During his meeting in Tehran on Wednesday with Special Envoy of the Pakistani President, Sughra Imam, Ahmadinejad criticized the interference of some regional countries in the Syrian countries which further complicates the situation.

He affirmed that earning people's freedom and the right to vote isn't achieved through war, and that the upcoming meetings of the foreign ministers in Tehran and of the leaders of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation in Mecca represent an opportunity to adopt political and local solution to the Syrian crisis rather than armed conflicts.

Salehi: Consultative Meeting on Syria will Discuss Ending Violence

Iranian Foreign Minister Ali Akbar Salehi said that the consultative meeting on Syria will be held on Thursday, attended by 12 or 13 countries from Asia, Africa and Latin America, adding that the number of participating countries might reach 15.

In a statement to the Iranian News Agency on Wednesday, Salehi said ''The main topic of Tehran meeting will be ending violence and national dialogue in Syria,'' adding that Iran is focused on putting an end to violence as soon as possible and the importance of starting national dialogue.

On the 48 Iranian visitors kidnapped by armed terrorist groups in Syria, Salehi said that efforts are underway to release them.

Iranian Assistant Foreign Minister: Consultative Meeting in Tehran on Syria Aims to Help Syrian People Overcome the Crisis

Iranian Assistant Foreign Minister for Arab and African Affairs Hossein Amir Abdullahian said that the consultative meeting in Tehran on the situation in Syria aims to help the Syrian people overcome the current crisis.

Mehr News Agency quoted Abdullahian as saying that the meeting is due to be held in Tehran on Thursday, with the participation of a big number of influential Arab and regional countries.

''The participants in the meeting aim to stress rejection of violence as a means to settle disputes,'' Abdullahian said, indicating that Tehran meeting will be held for enhancing regional and international efforts to help the Syrian people overcome the current crisis.

He said that the participants in the meeting believe that national dialogue is the best way to restore stability to Syria and pave the way for reaching a solution that is satisfactory to both sides.

Abdullahian said his country sees that the political solutions put forward by the UN envoy to Syria, Kofi Annan, pave the way for ending violence in Syria, adding that the meeting embodies the political will of the participating countries to solve the crisis peacefully.

M. Ismael / H. Sabbagh

Latest News Syria: Obama is very concerned about safety of Syria's chemical weapons...

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U.S. used napalm in Falluja

By David Hoskins

Nov 17, 2005 - New evidence came to light earlier this month that confirmed reports in Workers World newspaper and elsewhere that the U.S. military had used internationally banned chemical weapons, including white phosphorus and napalm, during its November 2004 attack on Falluja.

The U.S. government adamantly denied these reports at the time. Reports of the alleged U.S. war crimes were notably absent from the pages of most Western newspapers and there was virtually no discussion of the issue on cable news stations or talk radio. Al Jazeera’s facility in Iraq was forcibly shut down in an attempt to stifle journalistic inquiry into these reports.

Now, almost a year later, Italian state television RAI has produced a documentary confirming that U.S. forces in fact used white phosphorus and MK77 Mod 5—a napalm derivative—in Falluja. And the Guardian of London has called Falluja an atrocity on the scale of Mylai and Guernica, estimating 7,000 civilian dead.

While MK77 Mod 5 uses a formula consisting of a smaller concentration of benzene, the effects are exactly the same as napalm. The use of these incendiary wea pons is a violation of the 1980 UN Conven tion on Certain Conventional Weapons.

Workers World newspaper had published an article in its Dec. 2, 2004, issue based on a talk by Workers World Party Secre tariat member Sara Flounders in which she described how the use of illicit chemical weapons, poison gas and bunker busters had virtually destroyed the city of Falluja.

Jeff Englehart, a former soldier in the U.S. 1st Infantry Division in Iraq, says in the Italian documentary that he saw “burned bodies, burned children and burned women.” Entitled “Falluja: The Hidden Massacre,” the film contains video footage showing the bodies of civilian women and children following the U.S. air and artillery bombardment.

The innocent victims appear to have been burned to the bone. Others have partially melted flesh hanging from their bodies. These chemical weapons primarily affect the flesh of their targets. The evidence leaves no doubt that the victims were unarmed and in civilian clothing at the time of their deaths.

Orders to shoot children

Describing the United States’ intention to target civilians in Falluja, Englehart states that he was told by military superiors going into Falluja that “every single person that was walking, talking, breathing was [an] enemy combatant. As such every single person that was walking down the street or in a house was a target.” Englehart confirms that soldiers had orders to shoot children as young as 10 years old.

The use of white phosphorus and napalm in Falluja is just another example of criminal action and conspiracy to hide the truth. It fits into a domestic and international agenda to reshape world politics in favor of the extreme right wing of the U.S. ruling class. The breakup of the Soviet Union emboldened the most conservative sector of U.S. imperialism and its allies to try to assume for themselves absolute control of the world.

Recent news reports have provided myriad instances of criminality, corruption and conspiracy. Since 2004 alone, troops directed by the Bush administration have been caught committing torture at Abu Ghraib prison in Iraq, desecrating the Koran in the concentration camp in Guantanamo in occupied Cuba and now using internationally banned chemical weapons in Falluja.

The U.S. government first lied in 2002-2003, claiming the existence of massive amounts of chemical weapons in Iraqi hands, to justify the invasion of Iraq. The same U.S. government then turned its own arsenal of chemical weapons against innocent civilians in Falluja and has now been caught lying in an attempt to cover up its criminal actions.

http://www.workers.org/2005/world/falluja-1124/

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Photo: The U.S. used napalm, mustard gas, and nerve gas when it attacked Fallujah in November 2004.

08/07/2012

Latest News Syria: U.S. armed terrorists destroy water supply systems

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Water Supply Systems in Damascus Countryside Suffer SYP 21 Million in Losses Caused by Sabotage Acts

Aug 7, 2012 - DAMASCUS COUNTRYSIDE, (SANA) – Water supply systems in Damascus countryside have suffered up to SYP 21 million in losses because of Sabotage acts and attacks perpetrated by armed terrorist groups.

Director General of Drinking Water Establishment, Hussam Hreidin, pointed out that damages affected the buildings and vehicles of the establishment, adding the armed terrorist groups are attacking the employees while they are repairing what has been sabotaged in some areas.

He called on citizens to take part in protecting the water units as they provide water to all people, adding that the goal of sabotaging the water supply systems is preventing the establishment from delivering drinking water to citizens in low prices.

F.Allafi

Photo: While Syria is systematically destroyed, the 'first ladies' of the rich western countries feast...

Syria News: American hypocrisy about chemical weapons

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AUGUST 10, 2012, AT NOON: 51 YEARS AFTER THE CHEMICAL WAR BEGAN IN VIETNAM, WE SHOULD BE SILENT IN MEMORY, THEN TAKE ACTION TO REMEDY

To take action go to http://www.vn-agentorange.org/  

There are images from the U.S. War against Vietnam that have been indelibly imprinted on the minds of Americans who lived through it. One is the naked napalm-burned girl running from her village with flesh hanging off her body. Another is a photo of the piles of bodies from the My Lai massacre, where U.S. troops executed 504 civilians in a small village. Then there is the photograph of the silent scream of a woman student leaning over the body of her dead friend at Kent State University whose only crime was protesting the bombing of Cambodia in 1970. Finally, there is the memory of decorated members of Vietnam Veterans Against the War testifying at the Winter Soldier Hearings, often in tears, to atrocities in which they had participated during the war.

These pictures are heartbreaking. They expose the horrors of war. The U.S. War against Vietnam was televised, while images of the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq have intentionally been hidden from us. But what was not televised was the relentless ten years (1961-1971) of spraying millions of gallons of toxic herbicides over vast areas of South Vietnam. These chemicals exposed almost 5 million people, mostly civilians, to deadly consequences. The toxic herbicides, most notably Agent Orange, contained dioxin, one of the most dangerous chemicals known to man. It has been recognized by the World Health Organization as a carcinogen (causes cancer) and by the American Academy of Medicine as a teratogen (causes birth defects).

From the beginning of the spraying 51 years ago, until today, millions of Vietnamese have died from, or been completely incapacitated by, diseases which the U. S. government recognizes are related to Agent Orange for purposes of granting compensation to Vietnam Veterans in the United States. The Vietnamese, who were the intended victims of this spraying, experienced the most intense, horrible impact on human health and environmental devastation. Second and third generations of children, born to parents exposed during the war and in areas of heavy spraying — un-remediated “hot spots” of dioxin contamination, — suffer unspeakable deformities that medical authorities attribute to the dioxin in Agent Orange.

The Vietnamese exposed to the chemical suffer from cancer, liver damage, pulmonary and heart diseases, defects to reproductive capacity, and skin and nervous disorders. Their children and grandchildren have severe physical deformities, mental and physical disabilities, diseases, and shortened life spans. The forests and jungles in large parts of southern Vietnam were devastated and denuded. Centuries-old habitat was destroyed, and will not regenerate with the same diversity for hundreds of years. Animals that inhabited the forests and jungles are threatened with extinction, disrupting the communities that depended on them. The rivers and underground water in some areas have also been contaminated. Erosion and desertification will change the environment, causing dislocation of crop and animal life.

For the past 51 years, the Vietnamese people have been attempting to address this legacy of war by trying to get the United States and the chemical companies to accept responsibility for this ongoing nightmare. An unsuccessful legal action by Vietnamese victims of Agent Orange against the chemical companies in U.S. federal court, begun in 2004, has nonetheless spawned a movement to hold the United States accountable for using such dangerous chemicals on civilian populations. The movement has resulted in pending legislation HR 2634 – The Victims of Agent Orange Relief Act of 2011, which attempts to provide medical, rehabilitative and social service compensation to the Vietnamese victims of Agent Orange, remediation of dioxin-contaminated “hot spots,” and medical services for the children and grandchildren of U. S. Vietnam veterans and Vietnamese-Americans who have been born with the same diseases and deformities.

Using weapons of war on civilian populations violates the laws of war, which recognize the principle of distinction between military and civilian objects, requiring armies to avoid civilian targets. These laws of war are enshrined in the Hague Convention and the Nuremberg principles, and are codified in the Geneva Conventions of 1949 and the Optional Protocol of 1977, as well as the International Criminal Court statute. The aerial bombardments of civilian population centers in World Wars I and II violated the principle of distinction, as did the detonation of nuclear weapons at Hiroshima and Nagasaki on August 6 and August 9 of 1945. Hundreds of thousands of Japanese people were killed in an instant, even though Japan was already negotiating the terms of surrender.

The use of Agent Orange on civilian populations violated the laws of war and yet no one has been held to account. Taxpayers pick up the tab of the Agent Orange Compensation fund for the U. S. Veterans at a cost of 1.52 billion dollars a year. The chemical companies, most specifically Dow and Monsanto, which profited from the manufacture of Agent Orange, paid a pittance to settle the veterans’ lawsuit to compensate them, as the unintended victims, for their Agent Orange related illnesses. But the Vietnamese continue to suffer from these violations with almost no recognition, as do the offspring of Agent Orange-exposed U.S. veterans and Vietnamese-Americans.

What is the difference between super powers like the United States violating the laws of war with impunity and the reports of killing of Syrian civilians by both sides in the current civil war? Does the United States have any credibility to demand governments and non-state actors end the killings of civilians, when through wars and drones and its refusal to acknowledge responsibility for the use of Agent Orange, the United States has and is engaging in the very conduct it publicly deplores?

In 1945, at the founding conference of the United Nations, the countries of the world determined:

to save succeeding generations from the scourge of war, which twice in our lifetime has brought untold sorrow to mankind, and

to reaffirm faith in fundamental human rights, in the dignity and worth of the human person, in the equal rights of men and women and of nations large and small, and

to establish conditions under which justice and respect for the obligations arising from treaties and other sources of international law can be maintained, and

to promote social progress and better standards of life in larger freedom.

If we are to avoid sinking once again into the scourge of war, we must reaffirm the principles of the Charter and establish conditions under which countries take actions that promote rather than undermine justice and respect for our international legal obligations. The alternative is the law of the jungle, where only might makes right. It is time that right makes might.

August 10th marks 51 years since the beginning of the spraying of Agent Orange in Vietnam. In commemoration, the Vietnam Agent Orange Relief and Responsibility Campaign urges you to observe 51 seconds of silence at 12 noon, to think about the horrors of wars which have occurred. We ask you to take action so as not to see future images of naked children running from napalm, or young soldiers wiping out the population of an entire village, or other atrocities associated with war, poverty, and violence around the world. We urge you to take at least 51 seconds for your action. In the United States, you can sign an orange post card to the U.S. Congress asking it to pass HR 2634. This would be a good start to assist the Vietnamese victims of Agent Orange as well as the next generations of those exposed to these dangerous chemicals in both Vietnam and the United States.

Jeanne Mirer, a New York attorney, is president of the International Association of Democratic Lawyers. Marjorie Cohn is a professor at Thomas Jefferson School of Law and former president of the National Lawyers Guild. They are both on the board of the Vietnam Agent Orange Relief and Responsibility Campaign.

To sign the petition, go to http://www.vn-agentorange.org/  


 Global Research Articles by Jeanne Mirer


 Global Research Articles by Marjorie Cohn

http://www.globalresearch.ca/index.php?context=va&aid...

http://jakking.typepad.com/daily/2004/08/chemical_war_cr....

Photo: victims of American chemical weapons

08/06/2012

Latest News Syria: Center for Research on Globalization


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Interview with Michael Chossudovsky, Director of the Center for Research on Globalization.

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Aug 6, 2012 - Syrian security forces have clashed with foreign-sponsored insurgents in several areas of the northwestern city of Aleppo.

Meanwhile, the Syrian state TV said the army has arrested a group of Turkish and Saudi officers in Aleppo. 

Syrian President Bashar al-Assad told the Turkish Cumhuriyet daily in an interview in early July that Turkey “has supplied all logistic support to the terrorists who have killed our people.” 

Many people, including large numbers of security forces, have been killed in the turmoil in Syria that began in March 2011. 

On August 5, US senators John McCain, Joseph Lieberman and Lindsey Graham said Washington should “directly and openly” provide assistance, including weapons, intelligence and training, to the insurgents in Syria. 

On June 21, the New York Times reported that a group of CIA officers are operating secretly in southern Turkey and that the agents are helping the anti-Syria governments decide which gangs inside the Arab country will receive arms to fight the Syrian government. 

Press TV has conducted an interview with Professor Michael Chossudovsky, Director of the Center for Research on Globalization, to further discuss the issue. 

The following is a rough transcription of the interview. 

Press TV: Thank you for joining us here on Press TV, professor. Aleppo has been declared by many as the turning point in the standoff between the Syrian government and the foreign-backed militants, and no doubt a lot is being siphoned from the West to give support to the armed opposition. What do you make of the strategic importance of Aleppo?

Chossudovsky: Well, I am not able to comment on what is going on, on the ground in Aleppo. It would appear that the government forces have the upper hand and what the western military alliance is now contemplating is outright military intervention with the possibility of using both naval as well as air force against Syria or at least deploying and threatening Syria. This is confirmed by the planned deployment of naval forces which would include both British as well as French warships. Now this situation is particularly disturbing because the Russians have also dispatched warships to the Syrian coastline.

Press TV: It is interesting to note that the head of the Iraqi Kurdistan region has admitted to providing support to Syrian rebels, while the head of the so-called Syrian National Council has visited the region to pledge support for the Free Syrian Army as well. How do you also interpret the added Kurdish factor with regards to Syria? 

Chossudovsky: Well, the Kurdish factor with regards to Syria is very much connected to the role of Israel because we know that Israel is supportive of the regional Kurdistan government in northern Iraq. It is also supportive of the Kurdistan separatist movement in northern Syria. In fact there is indication that Israel is providing ... Kurds and I quote this is an article in an Israeli press “to breaking up Syria as a nation state.” Essentially it is the breakup of Syria. So these two dimensions of the Western supported opposition on the one hand, the NATO, US support for the Syrian National Council and on the other hand the Israeli support for the Kurds in northern Syria. 

Press TV: Also, Turkey has been actively supporting the rebels to bring about regime change in Syria, and it has been propping up the Iraqi-Kurdistan's government to achieve that goal. Considering Turkey is grappling with a Kurdish terrorist group on its own soil, isn’t it playing a very dangerous game by supporting them in Syria? 

Chossudovsky: well, I think that is in fact very contradictory on the part of Turkey. I see that Turkey’s role is much clearer with regards to its campaign in support of the Muslim Brotherhood in northern Syria, the position of supply route inside Turkey to the Free Syrian Army, the collaboration of Turkey directly with the Qatari and Saudi Arabians and recruiting mercenaries.

I think at this stage Turkey is more of a hub to the Free Syrian Army right on the border. And it is particularly relevant in relation to the campaign in Aleppo and Aleppo is very close to the Syria-Turkey border.

Press TV: What do you see as endgame being with regards to Syria? Do you think the west might have learned from Iraq, from Afghanistan even the way Libya is right now with the problem of armed people not giving up their arms and thus inhibiting any bringing of democracy into the country? Do you think the west might have learned from these examples? 

Chossudovsky: Well, the West is not learning from any examples. The West is determined to destabilize the Syrian government and produce a regime change. It has gone to tremendous length to co-opt a large membership of the United Nations General Assembly into supporting the resolution. 

Now this is a very sad day for the international community because those 133 member states that supported the resolution, they were subject to threat, armed twisting. Many of them are heavily indebted. Many of them are part of NATO countries. I do not think that decision, which was endorsed by 133 countries of the United Nations General Assembly, reflects even the sovereign countries. It was imposed by the Unites States through armed twisting threats, intimidation and ultimately these countries many of which are US former colonies or colonies of France and Britain, they supported this resolution.

TNP/SS 

http://www.presstv.ir/detail/2012/08/06/254815/west-attem...

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Photo: Chemical weapons in Vietnam. An American helicopter sprays a 'democratic' defolation agent.  Obama says on a hypocrite way to be 'very concerned about the safety of Syria's chemical weapons'... 

Website of the Embassy of the Islamic Republic of Iran in London (if the website, as regularly is the case with the website of the Syrian government, is not blocked by Washington)

http://www.iran-embassy.org.uk/

Latest News Syria: Center for Research on Globalization

08/04/2012

Syria News: Palestinian Factions Condemn American war propaganda

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Palestinian Factions Condemn Attempts at Exploiting Refugee Camps against the Situation in Syria

August 4, 2012 - DAMASCUS, (SANA)

The Palestinian National Alliance factions stressed that the Palestinian people will remain faithful to Syria who has embraced this people and its resistance and supported its national struggle.

The factions issued a press statement commenting on the crime which armed terrorist groups perpetrated in al-Yarmuk Camp and claimed the lives of a number of martyrs and the statements aimed at distorting the reality of this crime.

The statement said that there are conspiring parties that insist on taking the camps out of the context of their message and national goals, the most important of which is the right to return.

It added that the factions have since the beginning of the crisis in Syria made all their efforts to keep the Palestinian refugee camps away from suspicious political exploiting by parties hostile to Syria, stressing that the massacre was the result of mortar shells fired by armed terrorist groups from the neighboring al-Tadamun neighborhood.

The factions condemned the statements of "the authority in Ramallah" which included "false accusations" against the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine-General Command- and its general secretary, Ahmad Jibril.

The accusations, the statement explained, claimed that the Front seeks to get the Palestinian camps involved in the internal situation in Syria, "at a time when the Front has made all its effort to protect the camps and prevent them from being exploited outside their goals, on top being the right to return."

The factions said in its statement that those who abandon 78 percent of Palestine's land, dropp the right to return, practice oppression against the resistance fighters in Palestine in coordination with the Zionist enemy, stand still towards the judaization of Jerusalem and call for putting the situation in Syria under Chapter VII "are not in a position that allows them to trespass against the symbols of resistance or claim to care for the people in Syrian and other camps."

The statement reiterated the factions' stress that the Palestinian people are looking forward for Syria to get out of its crisis stronger and more firm in the face of the conspiracy targeting its unity and national and pan-Arab stance.

H. Said

08/03/2012

Syria: Annan's Plan Hindered by the Americans

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Washington that continuously bombards the world with war propaganda, blocks regularly the website of the Syrian government on http://www.sana.sy/index_eng.html

The blog 'Stop NATO - Opposition to global militarism', with more information about the latest developments in Syria, is also regularly blocked by Washington http://rickrozoff.wordpress.com/?p=14618'Sorry, no posts matched your criteria'.

Photo: NATO bombs Serbian civilians

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News transmitted by Syrian activists

 

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Salehi: Annan's Plan Hindered by the Americans, the West and Some Regional Countries 

Aug 3, 2012 - TEHRAN, (SANA) - Iran's Foreign Minister Ali Akbar Salehi on Friday said the Americans, the West and some regional countries have hindered the plan of UN envoy Kofi Annan to make it fail.

Salehi, in a press statement to the Iranian IRNA news agency, added that the Americans use the policy of projections and blaming others when it is they who have hampered Annan's plan.

" The Americans make projections and try to suggest their own opinion instead of the reality," Salehi was quoted as saying by IRNA, noting that the UN envoy clarified the reasons why he quit sometimes clearly and implicitly in other times.

He underscored that the Arab League and some regional and Western countries openly criticized Annan's six-point plan which had the approval of Syria and the influential parties in the region.

Salehi said these regional, Western and Arab sides did not want Annan to succeed and rejected any role of influential countries in the region in resolving the crisis in Syria.

He added that every time Annan succeeded in one area of solving the crisis, he would be faced by obstacles by the West and some regional countries.

"In general, Western countries and some regional countries did not want Mr. Annan's plan to succeed because in that case, they would not reach their goals," Salehi told IRNA.

He said that the UN envoy's plan stressed on the solution to the crisis to be a Syrian one without foreign dictates, adding that the Western and some regional countries have a delusion about the Syrian leadership leaving office.

"Mr. Annan's plan will continue since it is the best plan on the table," The Iranian Foreign Minister continued.

He expressed hope that Annan's successor takes an independent and unbiased stance and seeks to resolve the crisis in Syria.

H. Said

07/31/2012

Syria: Mounting Military pressure of Western War makers

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U.S. Defense Secretary Leon Panetta has begun a five-day, four-nation tour of North Africa and the Middle East to consolidate military ties with traditional allies against the backdrop of mounting Western pressure aimed at the governments of Syria and Iran...

Stop NATO
July 30, 2012

Pentagon Chief Rallies Arab, Israeli Allies Against Syria, Iran
Rick Rozoff

U.S. Defense Secretary Leon Panetta has begun a five-day, four-nation tour of North Africa and the Middle East to consolidate military ties with traditional allies against the backdrop of mounting Western pressure aimed at the governments of Syria and Iran.
His first two stops are to Tunisia and Egypt, long-standing American military client states and members of NATO's Mediterranean Dialogue partnership program. The next two are to Israel and Jordan, also Mediterranean Dialogue members, the first the main and the second one of the largest recipients of American military aid.
The two North African countries were the bellwethers of the so-called Arab Spring, a topic Panetta dwelled on at some length during his visit to Tunisia, though in relation to following Pentagon diktat Tunisia's Zine El Abidine Ben Ali and Egypt's Hosni Mubarak might well still be in power for all the difference that now exists. Last year's biennial joint U.S.-Egyptian Bright Star military exercise was cancelled during the early months of the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces, but there is no reason to believe next year's won't go ahead as usual.
Four months ago Washington released $1.3 billion in military assistance to the Egyptian junta, with Secretary of State Hillary Clinton waiving congressional conditions introduced last year and State Department spokeswoman Victoria Nuland stating, "These decisions reflect America's over-arching goal: to maintain our strategic partnership with an Egypt made stronger and more stable by a successful transition to democracy." 
The strategic partnership is one that began with the Carter-Brzezinski administration buying off President Anwar Sadat in 1978 and in so doing switching the largest and militarily most powerful Arab nation from non-alignment (Egypt under President Gamal Abdel Nasser was a founder of the Non-Aligned Movement) and close state-to-state relations with the Soviet Union to the U.S.'s major military client state in Africa and the Arab world. It was also initiated to break the back of Arab unity in relation to Israel and Palestine.
Because of its unique value to the Pentagon, Egypt is the only African nation not to be assigned to the Pentagon's Africa Command (AFRICOM), instead remaining in Central Command. The latter, launched in 1983, grew out of the Carter administration's Rapid Deployment Joint Task Force, which had been established to counter Soviet bloc influence in Northeast Africa: Egypt, Djibouti, Ethiopia, Kenya, Somalia and Sudan.
Similarly and for complementary geopolitical purposes, Israel is the only Middle Eastern nation not in Central Command's area of responsibility, instead being assigned to that of European Command.
Since the Camp David Accords of 1978, Egypt has been one of the two largest recipients of annual American aid (almost all of it military) and a dependable Pentagon ally bordering Israel and the Gaza Strip to the east, Libya to the west and Sudan to the south as well as controlling the Suez Canal connecting the Mediterranean Sea to the Arabian Sea and the Indian Ocean. The Mediterranean is the route through which U.S. warships, including nuclear-powered aircraft carriers and their assigned strike groups, pass after leaving the eastern coast of the U.S. en route to the Suez, whence they pass through the Red Sea to the Arabian Sea, the Persian Gulf and the broader Indian Ocean for air strikes in Afghanistan.
Panetta, no matter what he says formally, is visiting Egypt to ensure it remains in the American political and, especially, military column.
According to the Pentagon website, "The United States has had a strong military-to-military relationship with Egypt since the 1970s, and Panetta said he wants that relationship to continue and grow."
En route to Tunisia, Panetta stated to reporters: "Our goal is to advance security by supporting peaceful change throughout the region. This means establishing strong partnerships with new democratic governments in the region.”
He also said that the recent Syrian government offensive against armed insurgents in Aleppo will be - will be made to be - “a nail in Assad’s coffin.” He, like his civilian opposite number Hillary Clinton ("Wow!...We came, we saw, he died"), is not noted for excelling in the powers of abstract thinking, so his comment is not to be interpreted as merely a metaphor.
As though alleged humanitarian intervention was not casus belli enough, Panetta also invoked the Iraq war-style menace of "chemical and biological warfare sites in Syria that U.S. planners say need to be secured."
About those exaggerated threats, he said, “We’ve been in close coordination with countries in the region to ensure that this is happening.”
He also pledged to strengthen the "very close partnership" with Israel, particularly in respect to Iran. According to the Pentagon, "Iran and its pursuit of nuclear weapons technology will be a discussion point at all stops."
The defense chief added:
"My view is that when I sit down with my counterpart in Israel, we are unified in our view with regards to Iran. We’re unified in the position that they should not obtain a nuclear weapon, (and) we’re unified in our position that we have to bring every bit of pressure on them to change their ways.”
“The more we are working together, the more unified we are in the effort against Iran, the better off we will be in convincing Iran that there is no room here for them to do anything other than to back away from the nuclear program they are engaged in.”
Panetta will inspect the U.S.-funded Iron Dome anti-missile system while in Israel.
Again according to the Defense Department's account of his position while on the way to Tunisia, "Peaceful, democratic change has taken place since the Arab Spring, but Syria, Iran and extremism in general have continued to pose challenges."
That is, Panetta's mission is to recruit America's Tunisian, Egyptian, Israeli and Jordanian military allies to confront Syria and Iran.
The Pentagon's website cited an unnamed senior Defense Department official affirming that "Panetta plans to lay out the roadmap for the future military-to-military relationship between the United States and Tunisia." He was quoted asserting that "The military has played a positive role in Tunisia and we want that to continue.” 
During the press conference aboard the aircraft taking him to Tunisia, Panetta explained what Washington understands to be both the means and the ends of so-called democracy promotion in stating, “The United States continues to support efforts to strengthen Tunisia’s democracy, and DOD [the Department of Defense] will play an important role in that effort.”
In Egypt Panetta will meet with newly installed President Muhammad Mursi and Defense Minister Field Marshal Mohamed Hussein Tantawi - "Panetta has been in constant touch with Tantawi since former President Hosni Mubarak was overthrown" - who led the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces from February 11, 2011 to June 30, 2012.
In Israel he will consult with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, President Shimon Peres and Defense Minister Ehud Barak.
Then he will hold talks on bilateral military cooperation with King Abdullah in Jordan. According to the above-cited Pentagon official, “Syria will obviously be a topic of conversation, as the Jordanians are on the front line of that.”
As with his visits earlier this year to South America and Asia, Panetta's trip to North Africa and the Middle East has a concrete objective: To solidify military ties with states bordering or near the remaining handful of nations in the world not enmeshed in the Pentagon's global network.

richardrozoff | July 31, 2012 at 2:46 am | Categories: Uncategorized | URL: http://wp.me/pCpOz-3N4

http://rickrozoff.wordpress.com/2012/07/31/pentagon-chief...

Photo: The U.S. as the champion of 'human rights'.  South Vietnamese forces follow after terrified children, including 9-year-old Kim Phuc (center left), as they run down Route 1 near Trang Bang after an aerial napalm attack on suspected Viet Cong hiding places, June 8, 1972. A South Vietnamese plane accidentally dropped its flaming napalm on South Vietnamese troops and civilians. The terrified girl had ripped off her burning clothes while fleeing. The children from left to right are: Phan Thanh Tam, younger brother of Kim Phuc, who lost an eye, Phan Thanh Phouc, youngest brother of Kim Phuc, Kim Phuc, and Kim's cousins Ho Van Bon, and Ho Thi Ting. Behind them are soldiers of the Vietnam Army 25th Division.

07/27/2012

Syria is on fire. NATO lives in luxury...

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While U.S. and it allies set Syria on fire, NATO lives in luxury. The First Lady in her beautiful blue dress, talking with Prime Minister David Cameron...

"To use weapons against government institutions is a violation of international law and it is and by sending weapons and money into Syria, this is interference with the internal affairs of a founding member state of the United Nations and this is counter to international law."

The Syrian crisis has had an impact not only on Syria itself but also on the neighboring countries such as Lebanon and Iraq.

The crossing of extremist elements into Syria from surrounding states has also put an impact on these countries. 

Syria has been the scene of deadly unrest since mid-March, 2011 and many people, including large numbers of army and security personnel, have been killed in the violence. 

Saudi Arabia, Qatar, and most western countries have supported and funded the violence in Syria by providing logistics, arms, and intelligence to anti-government elements. 

Press TV has conducted an interview with Omar Nashabe, editor at al-Akhbar daily, to further talk over the issue. 

The video also offers the opinions of two additional guests: Bassam Abu Abdallah, from the Damascus University and political analyst Jihad Mouraccadeh. 

What follows is an approximate transcript of the interview. 

Press TV: What do you think is the relationship between what is happening, what was already happening in Iraq, the various explosions and what we are seeing also now in Syria? Do you think that this has extended from Iraq into Syria? 

Nashabe: Well there are signs that show that there is a wave of violence and terror that is more or less similar to what happened in Iraq and this is very worrying for us in Lebanon because we do not want this to spread the other way to Lebanon. 

The situation in Syria perhaps it would be beneficial for the viewers to give a very brief overview that yes, there are people calling for some democratic reforms and their right and their right to call for some freedoms that were not available in Syria and they are not available to a large extent in all other Arab countries. 

Now what actually happened is that these calls turned violent and turned aggressive and now we are witnessing a destruction of institutions in Syria, a destruction of the civilian infrastructure, a serious clash between different segments within the Syrian society and that is really worrying especially for us in Lebanon where we experienced the terrible war for 17 years.



So we do not want, we do not wish any country to actually experience what we did experience because this is a suffering that will have repercussions and that will make it difficult for reconstruction. We can see in Iraq today, yes, Saddam Hussein is gone but what about reconstruction in Iraq? 

I mean this is really proving to be a very difficult task and it is very sad. 

Press TV: Do you think that it is al-Qaeda elements or former Iraqi Ba’ath elements that are to blame? Do you think that they have taken advantage of the situation in Syria? 

Nashabe: Well if you want me to start by putting blame I would not put it on either. I would start by putting blame on the international community for failing to stop the infiltration of weapons and money and guns into Syria. 

And these unfortunately are some important powerful Western countries and some Arab regimes who are non-democratic themselves but who are putting up a slogan for democracy in Syria and smuggling weapons and money into Syria and that is leading to a massive destruction and loads of deaths.


And I think it would be appropriate to start this program by actually, I think all of us would actually turn a real feeling towards the Syrians or the families of the dead people in Syria and these horrible massacres that took place, this is a matter that comes first, that should always come first. 

Press TV: Mr. Nashabe, do you agree with this stance that perhaps the people have their protest and they have the right to be given arms? 

Nashabe: Well the people have the right to demonstrate peacefully and that is in all constitutions, even if as your guest claims they are being assaulted, they can resort to judicial system or if the local judicial system is not capable they can go for an international call for a judicial system. 

But to use weapons against government institutions is a violation of international law and it is and by sending weapons and money into Syria, this is interference with the internal affairs of a founding member state of the United Nations and this is counter to international law. 

Press TV: Who is smuggling these arms? 

Nashabe: There are some as I said at the beginning there are some Arab regimes that are not exactly known for their democratic beliefs or their holding on to freedom, I mean like Saudi Arabia known very well by thousands of reports by Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch and Qatar that does not exactly have a democracy or does not have a system of accountability or an election system. 

So these countries and of course in addition to other regimes in the region are sending in also there are some combatants going into Syria, there are some terrorists going into Syria benefiting from the situation to go in and there have been some bombings that are really representative of what we have learned of what are the consequences of terrorism and the destruction of terrorism.


And I think that the international community has pledged to fight terrorism and to fight terrorism means to deprive these groups from acting the way they do and the way they are acting today in Syria. 

Press TV: I think this is another issue... 

Nashabe: I just want to say that apparently our guest is not really aware of the position of the United Nations. The United Nations and Mr. Annan and Mr. Ban Ki-moon have never ever supported smuggling weapons into Syria. 

That is counter to United Nations UN Charter and on the fact that the international community does not recognize Syria if they really did not recognize the regime in Syria today, Mr. Bashar Ja’afari would not be sitting in the Security Council and maybe United Nations. 

Press TV: The issue of chemical weapons, how this, I mean why there has been a lot of statements from the United States, from Israel especially on the fact that the Syrian government does have chemical weapons and it will use them? Of course the Syrian government has said that it will not use them, but why this focus on the issue of chemical weapons? 

Nashabe: Well I think it is to put more pressure on the Syrian regime and I think that this reminds me of what happened in Iraq when there was the whole issue of weapons of mass destruction and so the international media unfortunately and the American media specifically, tried to jump over the WMDs by saying yes, not questioning if they exist or not just moving on and saying that they are afraid that they will be passed on to Hezbollah. 

Well the Syrian regime was very sharp and did not hesitate in answering and I saw Mr. Maqdisi the other day responding in a very fierce way and saying yes, well these weapons are to be used if Syria is being aggressed from the outside and that was a big surprise for the Americans, for the Europeans and for the Israelis also and well what is the objective of such weapons if these weapons do exist? It is to defend Syria against outside invaders and I believe that is a matter that has to do with Chapter 7 of the UN Charter that gives the right for every nation to defend itself against any outside intervention. 

Press TV: Let me take this question to Mr. Nashabe, now it seems in Lebanon , the sectarian issue in Lebanon seems to have extended into Lebanon, into Syria I mean, not the other way around although Syria was never sectarian? 

Nashabe: I won’t start in order, I will start with what your guest just said about Hezbollah. Hezbollah is a national liberation movement. It has liberated the South of Lebanon from Israeli presence when the Lebanese army and the other parties were incapable of doing that and it was recognized by all parties including by the late Prime Minister Rafiq Hariri himself in very numerous meetings between Mr. Hariri and Mr. Nasrallah several times. 

So therefore it is not really a sectarian group. It is a party that represents a national resistance. Hezbollah and Sayyed Nasrallah said that he supports the Syrian people and the will of the Syrian people. He has never in any speeches and I challenge you if you can bring one sentence that Sayyed Nasrallah said where he incites people to use violence in Syria. 

He supports the Syrian regime much less than the international law requires Lebanon to support the Syrian regime and you know yourself if you review the legal documents that there is an international convention between the Republic of Lebanon and the Syrian Arab Republic that has been signed by Prime Minister Hariri himself that calls for close ties and mutual defense against any external intervention with internal Syrian affairs. 

So I am talking about international law and a legal document and it is required by the Lebanese government to stand firm next to the Syrian regime and to stop anyone who smuggles weapons into the Syrian territory. This is by law. 

If you wish to violate the law by bringing in slogans such as these people have the right to defend themselves and other slogans that only lead to destruction inside Syria, that is a choice that one can make. 

However the Syrian Army and the officials in Syria will stand firm against any groups that are outside the law. There should be dialogue. That is the UN Charter. That is the Kofi Annan plan. Dialogue requires a ceasefire by all parties.


Hence, to have a ceasefire one must stop smuggling weapons into Syria, one must stop the hostilities on both sides and one must sit on the table. 

This attack by NATO and NATO supporters and traditional supporters of Israel and Qatar that has always had an office for Israeli commercial relations and other nations and this excitement, enthusiasm by Israel to overthrow the regime in Syria calls for reaction that is only natural among Muslims and Arabs to stand firm against these interventions with internal Arab affairs.


Press TV: Do you agree with what he is saying that they are not a threat to Israel or that Israel would really want Assad to go? 

Nashabe: Sayyed Nasrallah said clearly that the weapons of the resistance that threatened the security of Israel in 2006 were with the support of the Syrian people, with the support of Syria. One cannot separate the regime from its people. 

This is Syria we are talking about and Syria with all its population regardless of the various opinions in Syria, all the Syrians I think deep inside support the resistance against Israel and that will not change. 

http://www.presstv.ir/detail/2012/07/27/253064/sending-arms-to-syria-counter-to-intl-law/ 

07/17/2012

NATO-aggression: Syria needs sophisticated weapons

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Photo 1:  Flying-wing, Shenyang University, one of China's biggest makers of fighter jets

Photo 2: Afghanistan, victim of NATO-bombings

21:58 Posted by Universal in Latest News, NATO-aggression, Syria | Permalink | Comments (0) |  Facebook |

Syria: NATO will use chemical weapons

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NATO will use chemical weapons against Syria, U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton told the BBC on Monday.

Clinton warned that "If Assad does not retire, NATO will eradicate the entire Syrian people".

NATO has a large stock of chemical weapons and  a lot of independant countries are concerned about what will happen to them if they will resist NATO.

NATO uses also Depleted uranium (DU). It is one of the gifts that NATO left to the population of Kosovo following its war there in 1999. DU is radioactive and, when inhaled, remains in the lungs for years.

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NATO uses white phosphorous in the war against Taliban

International forces in Afghanistan are using the napalm-like substance white phosphorus in everything from grenades to flybomber in a war, usually fought in populated areas. Human Rights Organizations inculcates ISAF's duty to protect civilians

White phosphorus is a napalm like substance that ignite on contact with skin that sticks and stays on to burn as long as there is oxygen. The result is severe chemical burns, which very easily leads to death.

'Like napalm, white phosphorus, by nature, a weapon that is likely to cause superfluous injury or unnecessary suffering, "concludes the Red Cross in IHL and Denmark , used as a textbook in the Danish military. Still using Danish and foreign coalition forces in Afghanistan white phosphorus in large quantities and often in residential areas. It is clear from the leaked documents from Afghanistan that information in its possession.

A review of documents showing more than 1,100 cases where ISAF has used white phosphorus grenades, rockets and flybomber. Of these 59 documents that have never before been published.

Among the documents there are many reports which suggest that white phosphorus is not only used for legitimate purposes.

According to the conventions, including Denmark has signed, white phosphorus may only be used outside of densely populated areas. But the leaked documents war from Afghanistan indicate that phosphorus munitions are often used precisely in populated areas including Helmand's Green Zone, where Danish forces are deployed.

Worrisome weapons

The widespread use of white phosphorus cares more human rights organizations fear that Afghan civilians are paying the price for the coalition forces' use of napalm-like substance.

White phosphorus is not a banned weapon, but according Weapons Convention Protocol 3, by Denmark and most other NATO countries have signed, it is forbidden to use it against military targets located in heavily populated areas, "unless the military objective is clearly separated from civilians and civilian objects. "

"White phosphorus is not used against civilians or in areas where there are civilians," notes senior scientist Peter Vedel Kessing, Department of Human Rights.

Amnesty International considers the use of white phosphorus problem and believes that NATO forces use of the nasty substance should be examined.

"If you can talk about an inhuman weapon, white phosphorus belong to the category, because it leaves the victim in unimaginable pain," said Amnesty's press chief Ole Hoff Lund.

"Therefore it is important that the defense considers how and why ISAF using munitions with white phosphorus. "

A legitimate weapon

The leaked Afghanistan reports indicate that white phosphorus is used primarily in eastern Afghanistan along the border with Pakistan, where the war against the Taliban and other insurgent groups have been particularly intensive. But reports indicate that the substance also used in the Danish responsibility in Helmand. But it is not clear from logs on Danish troops are involved in the illegal use of the substance.

At the Army Operational Command, HOK , confirms military lawyer Rolf Verge that the Danish forces used white phosphorus, but he assures that only the case of legitimate purposes.

'The Danish forces in Af-Afghanistan use white phosphorus to throw smoke to obscure soldiers' movements on the battlefield but also in lysgranater and målmarkering, for example. where Danish forces attract flybomber, "says Rolf Verge and stresses that" white phosphorus would be used against objects, but not at people. "

"It will not be in accordance with the rules if Danish forces are using white phosphorous against people. And I doubt also that it would be consistent with the other coalition countries' regulations, "says Rolf Verge. "Do not generally use weapons that cause unnecessary suffering, and that makes white phosphorous."

Also ISAF confirms the use of white phosphorus. In a reply to Information underlines ISAF 's press spokesman Nicole R. Schwegman that there are "a legitimate weapon, used mainly for information, investigation missions and selecting bombemål.' It is also apparent from responds that white phosphorus into medium used as attack weapons.

"When white phosphorus is used as incendiary weapons, observe ISAF Weapons Convention Protocol Three, which places more emphasis on minimizing civilian damage. ISAF makes himself at all to great lengths to protect civilians in operations, "said Nicole R. Schwegman.

Information would have got a comment from Defense Gitte Lillelund Bech (V) to the ISAF 's use of phosphorus in Afghanistan. The minister believes that it is purely a military disciplinary matters, and she would not comment.


Fact: It goes Weapons Convention


The use of incendiary weapons as napalm and white phosphorus is regulated by the Convention on particularly inhumane weapons or simply Weapons Convention, Protocol Three.

The Convention was adopted by the UN in 1980 and acceded to by Denmark in 1997 - a total of 144 countries have acceded to it but not yet the United States .

Protocol 3:
Article 2, concerning the protection of civilians and civilian objects:

1. It is forbidden under all circumstances to make the civilian population as such, individual civilians or civilian objects the object of attack by incendiary weapons.

2. Prohibited under all circumstances to do something military objective located in a concentration of civilians the object of attack by air delivered incendiary weapons.

3. It is also forbidden to make any military objective located in a concentration of civilians the object of attack by other fire arms than air-delivered incendiary weapons, unless such military objective is clearly separated from the concentration of civilians and all feasible precautions are taken to reduce fire effects to military targets and avoid and in any case restrict it to a minimum or in any case minimize incidental loss of civilian life, maiming of civilians and damage to civilian objects.

4. It is prohibited to make forests or other driving force behind the object of attack by incendiary weapons except when such natural resources used to cover, conceal or camouflage combatants or other military objectives or are themselves military objectives.

http://www.defence.pk/forums/world-affairs/104466-nato-us...

 


 

07/16/2012

Hillary Clinton, preacher of 'human rights'

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From 1964 through 1973, the United States flew 580,000 bombing runs over Laos — one every 9 minutes for 10 years. More than 2 million tons of ordnance was unloaded on the countryside, double the amount dropped on Nazi Germany in World War II.

Nearly half of Laos is now contaminated with unexploded ordinance, explosive weapons such as bombs, grenades and land mines.

'Promoting freedom and democracy and protecting human rights around the world are central to U.S. foreign policy' (U.S. Department of State http://www.state.gov/j/drl/ )

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Hillary Clinton, Amnesty International, American State Department, Human Rights Watch and the wars against Libanon, Serbia, Iraq, Libya, Syria and Iran.

 
 
Suzanne Nossel Richard Holbrooke when he was UN ambassador and current assistant to Hillary Clinton for international organizations, is Executive Director of Amnesty International United States. She applied in office at the State Department to instrument the human rights to serve the imperial ambitions.

Ms. Nossel had previously worked for Human Rights Watch, as well as Bertelsmann Media Worldwide and the administration of the Wall Street Journal.

The Board of Directors of Amnesty International considered that the United States commitment to Suzanne Nossel in the Clinton and Obama administrations was a guarantee of competence and has not held against the crimes committed in Yugoslavia, Afghanistan, Iraq, Lebanon etc. .

Ms. Nossel has led various campaigns against Iran, Libya and Syria. In recent months she has shown in intoxicating the Council of Human Rights in Geneva in order to be adopted by the Security Council resolution authorizing a war against Libya. The imputations of Ms. Nossel has been denied since.

http://enricpatrick.over-blog.org/article-an-assistant-to...

07/09/2012

Syria and the US intervention in Chile...

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U.S. Central Intelligence Agency in Chile

40 years ago, the U.S. Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) secretly spent millions of dollars funding Chilean opposition groups.  The Chilean economy was destroyed. After a military coup, General Pinochet came to power.  Thousands of Chileans were torturted and murdered.

It is clear that the CIA plays also a central role in the events in the Middle East. 

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In 1970, a Socialist, Salvador Allende, was elected President of Chile.
The U.S. Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) secretly spent millions of dollars funding Chilean opposition groups, to "create pressures, exploit weaknesses [and] magnify obstacles" for Allende.
Within a few years the Chilean economy was in chaos, and the CIA spent at least $11 million more to plan and fund a coup that would put General Pinochet in power.
Almost comically unaware, Allende gave Pinochet complete command of the Army.
On 11 September 1973, the coup toppled Chile's government, and Allende was either killed or committed suicide.

Pinochet promptly appointed himself President, suspended the Constitution, closed Parliament, banned opposition political activists, illegalized trade unions, and initiated media censorship. Soccer stadiums and military bases were converted into prisons, while new prisons were rapidly constructed. "Liberal" judges were fired, and suspected leftists were rounded up, imprisoned, tortured, and killed. Thousands of people who spoke out against Pinochet, were arrested, and never heard from again. They were called "the disappeared".
During this time, the head of Chile's secret police was on the CIA payroll.

The U.S. was one of the first nations to recognize Pinochet's presidency as "legitimate", and restored foreign aid that had been stopped while Allende was President.
In short, Pinochet was America's man in Chile.

In 2004,  a year-long investigation into state-sponsored torture in Chile has documented that an estimated 35,000 people were abused during the 1973-90 military regime.

The National Commission on Political Prisoners and Torture presented its study to President Ricardo Lagos. The three volumes include hundreds of new claims about torture tactics, ranging from sexual abuse using dogs, to forcing suspects to watch as family members were sodomised or slowly electrocuted.

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U.S. Central Intelligence Agency in Egypt

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Omar Suleiman, Egypt’s top spy chief (photo), has long been favored by the US government for his ardent anti-Islamism and willingness to talk and act tough about Iran, and he has been the CIA’s main man in Cairo.  Suleiman is a favorite of Israel too; he held the “Israel Dossier” and directed Egypt’s efforts to crush Hamas by demolishing the tunnels that have functioned as a smuggling conduit for weapons and foodstuffs to Gaza.

In the mid-1990s, Suleiman worked closely with the Clinton administration in devising and implementing its rendition program. Each rendition was authorized at the very top levels of both governments [the US and Egypt].... He negotiated directly with top CIA-officials.

Under the Bush administration, in the context of the global “war on terror,” US renditions got “extraordinary,” meaning that the objective of kidnapping and extra-legal transfer was no longer for trial but rather interrogation for actionable intelligence.
The rendition program landed some people in CIA black sites and others were turned over for torture-by-proxy to other regimes. 
Egypt figured large as a torture destination of choice, as did Suleiman as Egypt’s torturer-in-chief.

At least one person extraordinarily rendered by the CIA to Egypt—Egyptian-born Australian citizen Mamdouh Habib—was tortured by Suleiman himself.
In October 2001, Habib was seized off a bus by Pakistani security forces. While detained in Pakistan, at the behest of America agents he was suspended from a hook and electrocuted repeatedly. He was then turned over to the CIA, and in the process of transporting him to Egypt he endured the usual treatment: his clothes were cut off, a suppository was stuffed in his anus, and he was diapered and “wrapped up like a spring roll.”
In Egypt, as Habib recounts in his memoir, My Story: The Tale of a Terrorist Who Wasn’t, he was repeatedly subjected to electric shocks, immersed in water up to his nostrils, beaten, his fingers were broken and he was hung from metal hooks. At one point, his interrogator slapped him so hard that his blindfold was dislodged, revealing the identity of his tormentor: Suleiman. Frustrated that Habib was not providing useful information or confessing to involvement in terrorism, Suleiman ordered a guard to murder a shackled Turkistani prisoner in front of Habib, which he did with a viscious karate kick.
In April 2002, after five months in Egypt, Habib was rendered to American custody at Bagram prison in Afghanistan, and then transported to Guantanamo. 
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Chilean Women’s Resistance in the Arpillera Movement:

'Egypt was a common destination for torture of detainees sent by U.S.'

CIA:
https://www.cia.gov/library/publications/the-world-factbook/geos/us.html

Embassy of Syria in Santiago: 

07/07/2012

WikiLeaks' mails about Syria: ambiguous

Guantanam.Camp.detainees.jpgIt is remarkable that at the same time that the U.S. war-propaganda-machine works at full speed, WikiLeaks announced to publish more than 2 million emails "from Syrian political figures, ministries and associated companies, dating from August 2006 to March 2012."

WikiLeaks works herefore together with the Beirut-based Al-Akhbar and revealed that Al-Akhbar was one of its co-publishing partners, along with Egypt's Al Masry Al Youm, Germany's ARD, Italy's L'Espresso, France's Owni, Spain's Publico.es, and Associated Press. 

It is not the first time that WikiLeaks acts ambiguous... 

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The Irrelevance of Wikileaks' Guantánamo Revelations

by Andy Worthington, November 30, 2010

Following Wikileaks’ release of 251,287 U.S. diplomatic cables, which has, if nothing else, revealed that secrecy and the Internet appear to be mutually incompatible, a handful of media outlets have picked up on references to Guantánamo — and the Obama administration’s negotiations with other countries — in the cables.

Britain’s Daily Mail led the way, claiming that the cables revealed that the Obama administration “played a high stakes game of ‘a Deal’ with foreign governments,” as it tried to secure new homes for prisoners who could not be repatriated because of fears that they would be tortured or otherwise ill-treated in their home countries.

The Mail stated that Slovenia was “told that if it wanted a meeting with the president, it would have to accept a prisoner,” that “the island nation of Kiribati [in the central Pacific] was offered incentives worth millions of dollars to take in Chinese Muslim detainees” (the Uighurs, the most high-profile cleared detainees in the prison), and that Belgium was told that “accepting more prisoners would be a ‘low-cost way’ to ‘attain prominence in Europe.’”

In addition, the Guardian posted a cable detailing discussions in March 2009 between John Brennan, President Obama’s principal counterterrorism adviser, and King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia. Most notable for the King’s fiery, warmongering rhetoric about Iran, the meeting also involved Brennan giving the King “a letter from President Obama expressing a personal message of friendship, appreciation for our close and collaborative relationship and concern over the disposition of Yemeni detainees at Guantánamo” — 99 in total, at the time of Brennan’s visit.

Following discussions about the Yemenis, the cable noted:

“I’ve just thought of something,” the King added, and proposed implanting detainees with an electronic chip containing information about them and allowing their movements to be tracked with Bluetooth. This was done with horses and falcons, the King said. Brennan replied, “horses don’t have good lawyers,” and that such a proposal would face legal hurdles in the U.S., but agreed that keeping track of detainees was an extremely important issue that he would review with appropriate officials when he returned to the United States.

Elsewhere, the Washington Post noted, “During a meeting between U.S. and Chinese ambassadors in Kyrgyzstan in early 2009, the Chinese diplomat said it was a “slap in the face” that the United States was not returning Chinese Uighur detainees to their homeland but was instead planning to resettle them in Germany,” which never happened.

The problem with all these stories is that they reveal nothing that was not already known, and, moreover, skip over the uncomfortable truth that, when it comes to closing Guantánamo and dealing with the prisoners still held there, every problem that America encounters is of its own making.

No one should be surprised that a certain amount of horse-trading, arm-twisting, and envelopes stuffed full of cash were involved in relocating former Guantánamo prisoners to the majority of the 16 countries in which those who could not safely be repatriated were given new homes. With a few exceptions, the countries that took prisoners very obviously sought money and/or influence.

Belgium was not particularly prominent in this list — although the country did indeed take a prisoner in October 2009 — any more than were Ireland, Portugal, and Spain (and Portugal’s former colony Cape Verde), which have all taken former prisoners, but from Eastern Europe and the former Soviet Union countries were almost queuing up for favors: in Albania, Bulgaria, Georgia, Hungary, Latvia, and Slovakia. Noticeably, however, Slovenia, despite the mention in the Wikileaks documents, obviously thought twice about the importance it attached to securing a personal audience with President Obama, as it has not taken in a single former Guantánamo prisoner, and nor has Kiribati, despite the offer of millions of dollars.

Outside of the middle and lower rungs of the pecking order, France, which took two Algerians in 2009, and Germany, which made up for turning down the Uighurs, taking a stateless Palestinian and a Syrian in September this year, had less to gain, except, perhaps, for making their neighbors look less generous, and Switzerland picked up where Germany left off by taking two Uighurs in March this year, risking the wrath of China that its northern neighbor was so anxious to avoid. Others who punched above their weight to help the Uighurs — Bermuda, which took four in June 2009, and Palau, which took six in October 2009 — did so not only for influence and/or financial reward, but also because they were not afraid of China: wealthy Bermuda because it is immune to the need for Chinese support, and Palau because the tiny nation in the north Pacific deals with Taiwan rather than Beijing.

As for the Saudi story, the Washington Post correctly noted that Brennan’s meeting involved hopes that King Abdullah would accept some of the Yemenis into its rehabilitation program, but noted that this was “an ambition that faltered along with the plan to close Guantánamo Bay” — as indeed it did, quietly fading away despite extensive and hopeful reporting about the plan, which lasted throughout most of 2009.

This kind of vague reference to the failure to close Guantánamo is as far as the mainstream media has gone in its analysis of why negotiations with other countries were so important. For those seeking powerful headlines that never appear, the blunt truth is that almost everything of importance relating to Guantánamo, and an unacceptable situation in which, it now appears, the prison may never close, involves four parties in the United States, and has nothing whatsoever to do with Wikileaks or with other countries, as it relates primarily to the miserable manner in which the resettlement of the Uighurs was handled.

The first of these four culpable parties is President Obama’s Justice Department, which, in February 2009, fought to prevent the Uighurs from being re-housed in the U.S., as ordered by Judge Ricardo Urbina when he granted their habeas corpus petition in October 2008.

The second is the D.C. Circuit Court, which agreed with the Justice Department, and made some contentious arguments about immigration and executive power to prevent their release.

The third is Congress, which came close to passing a law preventing any Guantánamo prisoner from being brought to the U.S. mainland for any reason in the fall of 2009, but then relented, agreeing — in theory, at least — that prisoners could be brought to the mainland for trial, but not for any other reason (although no one has been transferred to the United States since the law was passed).

The fourth is President Obama, who, in May 2009, killed a plan by White House Counsel Greg Craig to bring two of the Uighurs to live in the United States, as a precursor to bringing more, and on the clear understanding that it would encourage other countries to take cleared prisoners who couldn’t be returned home.

Although these decisions paved the way for the negotiations highlighted in the Wikileaks documents, the main problem now is that it looks as though even the horse-trading has stopped. There are apparently 33 prisoners — most of whom face the risk of torture if repatriated — who are awaiting release, or who are “approved for transfer,” to use the phrase that Obama’s interagency Guantánamo Review Task Force learned from President Bush when it reviewed the cases of all the prisoners last year, although the well of countries prepared to take them appears to have dried up.

And the rest? There are 58 Yemenis, also “approved for transfer,” but held on what seems to be a permanent basis because of a moratorium on releasing anyone to Yemen, which President Obama announced last January, after it was revealed that the failed Christmas Day plane bomber, Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab, had trained in Yemen; 34 other men, including Khalid Sheikh Mohammed and four other men accused of involvement in the 9/11 attacks, who were recommended for trials that Obama doesn’t want to risk pursuing; and 48 others whom the Task Force recommended should be held indefinitely without charge or trial.

Compared to this, some horse-trading and financial incentives are nothing, and compared to making deals with other countries, the real story is that Guantánamo may never close, and no one seems to care.

Andy Worthington is the author of  The Guantánamo Files: The Stories of the 774 Detainees in America’s Illegal Prison (published by Pluto Press) and serves as policy advisor to the Future of Freedom Foundation. Visit his website at: www.andyworthington.co.uk.

 

 

 

 

WikiLeaks Guantánamo Prisoners: America needs a regime change...

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WikiLeaks Reveals Secret Files on All Guantánamo Prisoners

In its latest release of classified US documents, WikiLeaks is shining the light of truth on a notorious icon of the Bush administration’s "War on Terror" — the prison at Guantánamo Bay, Cuba, which opened on January 11, 2002, and remains open under President Obama, despite his promise to close the much-criticized facility within a year of taking office.

In thousands of pages of documents dating from 2002 to 2008 and never seen before by members of the public or the media, the cases of the majority of the prisoners held at Guantánamo — 765 out of 779 in total — are described in detail in memoranda from JTF-GTMO, the Joint Task Force at Guantánamo Bay, to US Southern Command in Miami, Florida.

These memoranda, known as Detainee Assessment Briefs (DABs), contain JTF-GTMO’s recommendations about whether the prisoners in question should continue to be held, or should be released (transferred to their home governments, or to other governments). They consist of a wealth of important and previously undisclosed information, including health assessments, for example, and, in the cases of the majority of the 172 prisoners who are still held, photos (mostly for the first time ever).

They also include information on the first 201 prisoners released from the prison, between 2002 and 2004, which, unlike information on the rest of the prisoners (summaries of evidence and tribunal transcripts, released as the result of a lawsuit filed by media groups in 2006), has never been made public before. Most of these documents reveal accounts of incompetence familiar to those who have studied Guantánamo closely, with innocent men detained by mistake (or because the US was offering substantial bounties to its allies for al-Qaeda or Taliban suspects), and numerous insignificant Taliban conscripts from Afghanistan and Pakistan.

Beyond these previously unknown cases, the documents also reveal stories of the 399 other prisoners released from September 2004 to the present day, and of the seven men who have died at the prison.

The memos are signed by the commander of Guantánamo at the time, and describe whether the prisoners in question are regarded as low, medium or high risk. Although they were obviously not conclusive in and of themselves, as final decisions about the disposition of prisoners were taken at a higher level, they represent not only the opinions of JTF-GTMO, but also the Criminal Investigation Task Force, created by the Department of Defense to conduct interrogations in the "War on Terror," and the BSCTs, the behavioral science teams consisting of psychologists who had a major say in the "exploitation" of prisoners in interrogation.

Crucially, the files also contain detailed explanations of the supposed intelligence used to justify the prisoners’ detention. For many readers, these will be the most fascinating sections of the documents, as they seem to offer an extraordinary insight into the workings of US intelligence, but although many of the documents appear to promise proof of prisoners’ association with al-Qaeda or other terrorist organizations, extreme caution is required.

The documents draw on the testimony of witnesses — in most cases, the prisoners’ fellow prisoners — whose words are unreliable, either because they were subjected to torture or other forms of coercion (sometimes not in Guantánamo, but in secret prisons run by the CIA), or because they provided false statements to secure better treatment in Guantánamo.

Regular appearances throughout these documents by witnesses whose words should be regarded as untrustworthy include the following "high-value detainees" or "ghost prisoners". Please note that "ISN" and the numbers in brackets following the prisoners’ names refer to the short "Internment Serial Numbers" by which the prisoners are or were identified in US custody:

Abu Zubaydah (ISN 10016), the supposed "high-value detainee" seized in Pakistan in March 2002, who spent four and a half years in secret CIA prisons, including facilities in Thailand and Poland. Subjected to waterboarding, a form of controlled drowning, on 83 occasions in CIA custody August 2002, Abu Zubaydah was moved to Guantánamo with 13 other "high-value detainees" in September 2006.

Ibn al-Shaykh al-Libi (ISN 212), the emir of a military training camp for which Abu Zubaydah was the gatekeeper, who, despite having his camp closed by the Taliban in 2000, because he refused to allow it to be taken over by al-Qaeda, is described in these documents as Osama bin Laden’s military commander in Tora Bora. Soon after his capture in December 2001, al-Libi was rendered by the CIA to Egypt, where, under torture, he falsely confessed that al-Qaeda operatives had been meeting with Saddam Hussein to discuss obtaining chemical and biological weapons. Al-Libi recanted this particular lie, but it was nevertheless used by the Bush administration to justify the invasion of Iraq in March 2003. Al-Libi was never sent to Guantánamo, although at some point, probably in 2006, the CIA sent him back to Libya, where he was imprisoned, and where he died, allegedly by committing suicide, in May 2009.

Sharqawi Abdu Ali al-Hajj (ISN 1457), a Yemeni, also known as Riyadh the Facilitator, who was seized in a house raid in Pakistan in February 2002, and is described as "an al-Qaeda facilitator." After his capture, he was transferred to a torture prison in Jordan run on behalf of the CIA, where he was held for nearly two years, and was then held for six months in US facilities in Afghanistan. He was flown to Guantánamo in September 2004.

Sanad Yislam al-Kazimi (ISN 1453), a Yemeni, who was seized in the UAE in January 2003, and then held in three secret prisons, including the "Dark Prison" near Kabul and a secret facility within the US prison at Bagram airbase. In February 2010, in the District Court in Washington D.C., Judge Henry H. Kennedy Jr. granted the habeas corpus petition of a Yemeni prisoner, Uthman Abdul Rahim Mohammed Uthman, largely because he refused to accept testimony produced by either Sharqawi al-Hajj or Sanad al-Kazimi. As he stated, "The Court will not rely on the statements of Hajj or Kazimi because there is unrebutted evidence in the record that, at the time of the interrogations at which they made the statements, both men had recently been tortured."

Others include Ahmed Khalfan Ghailani (ISN 10012) and Walid bin Attash (ISN 10014), two more of the "high-value detainees" transferred into Guantánamo in September 2006, after being held in secret CIA prisons.

Other unreliable witnesses, held at Guantánamo throughout their detention, include:

Yasim Basardah (ISN 252), a Yemeni known as a notorious liar. As the Washington Post reported in February 2009, he was given preferential treatment in Guantánamo after becoming what some officials regarded as a significant informant, although there were many reasons to be doubtful. As the Post noted, "military officials ... expressed reservations about the credibility of their star witness since 2004," and in 2006, in an article for the National Journal, Corine Hegland described how, after a Combatant Status Review Tribunal at which a prisoner had taken exception to information provided by Basardah, placing him at a training camp before he had even arrived in Afghanistan, his personal representative (a military official assigned instead of a lawyer) investigated Basardah’s file, and found that he had made similar claims against 60 other prisoners in total. In January 2009, in the District Court in Washington D.C., Judge Richard Leon (an appointee of George W. Bush) excluded Basardah’s statements while granting the habeas corpus petition of Mohammed El-Gharani, a Chadian national who was just 14 years old when he was seized in a raid on a mosque in Pakistan. Judge Leon noted that the government had "specifically cautioned against relying on his statements without independent corroboration," and in other habeas cases that followed, other judges relied on this precedent, discrediting the "star witness" still further.

Mohammed al-Qahtani (ISN 063), a Saudi regarded as the planned 20th hijacker for the 9/11 attacks, wassubjected to a specific torture program at Guantánamo, approved by defense secretary Donald Rumsfeld. This consisted of 20-hour interrogations every day, over a period of several months, and various other "enhanced interrogation techniques," which severely endangered his health. Variations of these techniques then migrated to other prisoners in Guantánamo (and to Abu Ghraib), and in January 2009, just before George W. Bush left office, Susan Crawford, a retired judge and a close friend of Dick Cheney and David Addington, who was appointed to oversee the military commissions at Guantánamo as the convening authority, told Bob Woodward that she had refused to press charges against al-Qahtani, because, as she said, "We tortured Qahtani. His treatment met the legal definition of torture." As a result, his numerous statements about other prisoners must be regarded as worthless.

Abd al-Hakim Bukhari (ISN 493), a Saudi imprisoned by al-Qaeda as a spy, who was liberated by US forces from a Taliban jail before being sent, inexplicably, to Guantánamo (along with four other men liberated from the jail) is regarded in the files as a member of al-Qaeda, and a trustworthy witness.

Abd al-Rahim Janko (ISN 489), a Syrian Kurd, tortured by al-Qaeda as a spy and then imprisoned by the Taliban along with Abd al-Hakim Bukhari, above, is also used as a witness, even though he was mentally unstable. As his assessment in June 2008 stated, "Detainee is on a list of high-risk detainees from a health perspective ... He has several chronic medical problems. He has a psychiatric history of substance abuse, depression, borderline personality disorder, and prior suicide attempt for which he is followed by behavioral health for treatment."

These are just some of the most obvious cases, but alert readers will notice that they are cited repeatedly in what purports to be the government’s evidence, and it should, as a result, be difficult not to conclude that the entire edifice constructed by the government is fundamentally unsound, and that what the Guantánamo Files reveal, primarily, is that only a few dozen prisoners are genuinely accused of involvement in terrorism.

The rest, these documents reveal on close inspection, were either innocent men and boys, seized by mistake, or Taliban foot soldiers, unconnected to terrorism. Moreover, many of these prisoners were actually sold to US forces, who were offering bounty payments for al-Qaeda and Taliban suspects, by their Afghan and Pakistani allies — a policy that led ex-President Musharraf to state, in his 2006 memoir, In the Line of Fire, that, in return for handing over 369 terror suspects to the US, the Pakistani government “earned bounty payments totalling millions of dollars.”

Uncomfortable facts like these are not revealed in the deliberations of the Joint Task Force, but they are crucial to understanding why what can appear to be a collection of documents confirming the government’s scaremongering rhetoric about Guantánamo — the same rhetoric that has paralyzed President Obama, and revived the politics of fear in Congress — is actually the opposite: the anatomy of a colossal crime perpetrated by the US government on 779 prisoners who, for the most part, are not and never have been the terrorists the government would like us to believe they are.

(Andy Worthington)

How to Read WikiLeaks’ Guantánamo Files

The nearly 800 documents in WikiLeaks’ latest release of classified US documents are memoranda from Joint Task Force Guantánamo (JTF-GTMO), the combined force in charge of the US "War on Terror" prison at Guantánamo Bay, Cuba, to US Southern Command, in Miami, Florida, regarding the disposition of the prisoners.

Written between 2002 and 2008, the memoranda were all marked as "secret," and their subject was whether to continue holding a prisoner, or whether to recommend his release (described as his "transfer" — to the custody of his own government, or that of some other government). They were obviously not conclusive in and of themselves, as final decisions about the disposition of prisoners were taken at a higher level, but they are very significant, as they represent not only the opinions of JTF-GTMO, but also the Criminal Investigation Task Force, created by the Department of Defense to conduct interrogations in the "War on Terror," and the BSCTs, the behavioral science teams consisting of psychologists who had a major say in the "exploitation" of prisoners in interrogation.

Under the heading, "JTF-GTMO Detainee Assessment," the memos generally contain nine sections, describing the prisoners as follows, although the earlier examples, especially those dealing with prisoners released — or recommended for release — between 2002 and 2004, may have less detailed analyses than the following:

1. Personal information

Each prisoner is identified by name, by aliases, which the US claims to have identified, by place and date of birth, by citizenship, and by Internment Serial Number (ISN). These long lists of numbers and letters — e.g. US9YM-000027DP — are used to identify the prisoners in Guantánamo, helping to dehumanize them, as intended, by doing away with their names. The most significant section is the number towards the end, which is generally shortened, so that the example above would be known as ISN 027. In the files, the prisoners are identified by nationality, with 47 countries in total listed alphabetically, from "az" for Afghanistan to "ym" for Yemen.

2. Health

This section describes whether or not the prisoner in question has mental health issues and/or physical health issues. Many are judged to be in good health, but there are some shocking examples of prisoners with severe mental and/or physical problems.

3. JTF-GTMO Assessment

a. Under "Recommendation," the Task Force explains whether a prisoner should continue to be held, or should be released. b. Under "Executive Summary," the Task Force briefly explains its reasoning, and, in more recent cases, also explains whether the prisoner is a low, medium or high risk as a threat to the US and its allies and as a threat in detention (i.e. based on their behavior in Guantánamo), and also whether they are regarded as of low, medium or high intelligence value. c. Under "Summary of Changes," the Task Force explains whether there has been any change in the information provided since the last appraisal (generally, the prisoners are appraised on an annual basis).

4. Detainee’s Account of Events

Based on the prisoners’ own testimony, this section puts together an account of their history, and how they came to be seized, in Afghanistan, Pakistan or elsewhere, based on their own words.

5. Capture Information

This section explains how and where the prisoners were seized, and is followed by a description of their possessions at the time of capture, the date of their transfer to Guantánamo, and, spuriously, "Reasons for Transfer to JTF-GTMO," which lists alleged reasons for the prisoners’ transfer, such as knowledge of certain topics for exploitation through interrogation. The reason that this is unconvincing is because, as former interrogator Chris Mackey (a pseudonym) explained in his book The Interrogators, the US high command, based in Camp Doha, Kuwait, stipulated that every prisoner who ended up in US custody had to be transferred to Guantánamo — and that there were no exceptions; in other words, the "Reasons for transfer" were grafted on afterwards, as an attempt to justify the largely random rounding-up of prisoners.

6. Evaluation of Detainee’s Account

In this section, the Task Force analyzes whether or not they find the prisoners’ accounts convincing.

7. Detainee Threat

This section is the most significant from the point of view of the supposed intelligence used to justify the detention of prisoners. After "Assessment," which reiterates the conclusion at 3b, the main section, "Reasons for Continued Detention," may, at first glance, look convincing, but it must be stressed that, for the most part, it consists of little more than unreliable statements made by the prisoners’ fellow prisoners — either in Guantánamo, or in secret prisons run by the CIA, where torture and other forms of coercion were widespread, or through more subtle means in Guantánamo, where compliant prisoners who were prepared to make statements about their fellow prisoners were rewarded with better treatment. Some examples are available on the homepage for the release of these documents: http://wikileaks.ch/gitmo/

With this in mind, it should be noted that there are good reasons why Obama administration officials, in the interagency Guantánamo Review Task Force established by the President to review the cases of the 241 prisoners still held in Guantánamo when he took office, concluded that only 36 could be prosecuted.

The final part of this section, "Detainee’s Conduct," analyzes in detail how the prisoners have behaved during their imprisonment, with exact figures cited for examples of "Disciplinary Infraction."

8. Detainee Intelligence Value Assessment

After reiterating the intelligence assessment at 3b and recapping on the prisoners’ alleged status, this section primarily assesses which areas of intelligence remain to be "exploited," according to the Task Force.

9. EC Status

The final section notes whether or not the prisoner in question is still regarded as an "enemy combatant," based on the findings of the Combatant Status Review Tribunals, held in 2004-05 to ascertain whether, on capture, the prisoners had been correctly labeled as "enemy combatants." Out of 558 cases, just 38 prisoners were assessed as being "no longer enemy combatants," and in some cases, when the result went in the prisoners’ favor, the military convened new panels until it got the desired result.

http://wikileaks.org/gitmo/#

07/04/2012

Latest breaking news on Syria

Art.Peacock and a Flower.jpgThe U.S. and its allies which planned a 'regime change' in Syria, are providing their so called 'rebels' not only with weapons.  

They bombard us also with horror facts and war propaganda, to justify a war against Syria. 

Below we publish some information about Syria’s five-year plan that included measures to reduce poverty.

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'Syria in search of paradigm': Social policy objectives 

Syria’s active five-year plan, lasting until 2010, commits the government to further expansion of the open market. The goal of a social market economy is spelled out. The plan includes measures to reduce poverty, introduce safety nets and create productive jobs. It is noteworthy that the market system will be introduced in a five-year plan, an instrument typical of central planning. It is interesting, moreover, that the term “social market economy” is currently acknowledged only in Germany as the name of an existing economic system, although similar political models do exist in other European countries. Syria is the first country outside Europe to adapt Germany’s system to its ends. The principles of traditional Arab social security systems align surprisingly well with those of a social market economy: The principles of equal opportunities and social responsibility are cornerstones of both systems (see box). The centrality of these principles in a social market economy distinguishes it as an alternative to the Anglo- Saxon variety of capitalism. 

German development policy supports the Syrian government's reform efforts towards a social market economy. As with China, it’s hoped that an open market will eventually lead to political liberalisation. German Technical Cooperation (GTZ), the government agency, is cooperating in a project in Damascus with, amongst others, Syria's reformist Deputy Prime Minister Abdullah al-Dardari. GTZ provides a mix of policy advice, institutional development and capacity building to help improve the analysis, planning and implementation of economic reforms. “Social, labour and employment policy are also important issues,” says GTZ's Michael Krakowski. "Our main aim is to support a regulatory policy that reduces social distortions.” 

The performance of the economy suggests that the reformers are on the right path: since 2004, there have been signs of a moderate recovery. While the World Bank recorded just 2 % annual economic growth in 2003, it noted 6 % in 2004 and even 7 % in 2007. 


Image: Peacock and a Flower - Syria, 5th century - Mosaic

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