KEEPING WATCH: MARRIAGE ISN'T FOR ME
EDITED FROM THE HUFFINGTON POST — To see earlier posts click on address below
Excerpt from Seth Adam Smith : Blogger; Editor-in-chief of ForwardWalking.com
Having been married only a year and a half, I've recently come to the conclusion that marriage isn't for me.
I met my wife in high school when we were 15 years old.
The nearer Kim and I approached the decision to marry, the more I was filled with a paralyzing fear. Was I ready? Was I making the right choice? Was Kim the right person to marry? Would she make me happy?
Then, one fateful night, I shared these thoughts and concerns with my dad.
With a knowing smile he said, "Seth, you're being totally selfish. So I'm going to make this really simple: marriage isn't for you. You don't marry to make yourself happy, you marry to make someone else happy. Marriage is about the person you married."
My father's advice was both shocking and revelatory. It went against the grain of today's "Walmart philosophy", which is if it doesn't make you happy, you can take it back and get a new one.
Selfishness demands, "What's in it for me?" while Love asks, "What can I give?"
Some time ago, my wife showed me what it means to love selflessly. For many months, my heart had been hardening with a mixture of fear and resentment. Then, after the pressure had built up to where neither of us could stand it, emotions erupted. I was callous. I was selfish.
But instead of matching my selfishness, Kim did something beyond wonderful -- she showed an outpouring of love. Laying aside all of the pain and anguish I had caused her, she lovingly took me in her arms and soothed my soul.
I realized that I had forgotten my dad's advice. While Kim's side of the marriage had been to love me, my side of the marriage had become all about me. This awful realization brought me to tears, and I promised my wife that I would try to be better.
To all who are reading this article -- married, almost married, single, or even the sworn bachelor or bachelorette -- I want you to know that marriage isn't for you.
SEE MORE @ http://www.huffingtonpost.com/seth-adam-smith/marriage-isnt-for-you_b_4209837.html
MORE- STATE SPONSORED ASSASSINATION
“Last spring, 15 national faith-based organizations, including the American Friends Service Committee, sent a letter to President Obama and Congress calling for oversight and accountability in drone warfare. At about the same time, the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops issued a statement calling for “public discussion of the terms of the administration’s policy of employing drones for targeted killings.”
• “Civilian casualties: The Guardian newspaper reports that between 3,000 and 4,500 people have been killed by U.S. drone strikes — over 200 were children, and at least 400 were civilians. The secrecy of U.S. drone policy makes documenting exact numbers difficult. The problem is further exacerbated by the U.S. definition of “militants” — all males 14 years and older in specific areas are considered by the U.S. to be militants and, therefore, appropriate targets.
• “Global War on Terror”: Used by the U.S. to justify drone strikes around the world, this claim undermines international human rights laws protecting the right to life and further expands the concept of war to having no time or geographic limits.”
This is but a taste of an exceptional editorial.
See it all @
"State-sponsored assassination is actually illegal according to the laws of the United States itself."
"The hubris, not only of the State Department's announcement of Gaddafi's potential assassination but of the world's greatest democracy violating its own laws has not been lost on Washington insiders who have, over time, debated the EO (knowing of its repeated violation), only to have it remain on the books to this day.
Discussions of the issue have led to elaborations of the law several times since Ford's 1976 EO. In 1978, President Carter's EO 12036 made it clear that "indirect" assassination would also not be undertaken by the US government and its agencies. Later, Executive Orders by President Reagan in 1981 (EO 12333), President Clinton in 2004 (EO 13355) and the second President Bush in 2008 (EO 13470), were also added to the list -- and violated.
These Executive Orders -- edicts that are no different in form, function or repercussion than any given US law -- were no doubt meant to convince someone that the US is not an international judge-jury-executioner, that it is a civilized nation with a civilized government.
The Obama administration has made it clear that that pretense is no longer of interest."
I know You can dearly love America and be ashamed of Her government, Her President and even of Her People, all at the same time. I have been blessed with a wife who can do that very well. Her capacity to love me even when I have brought shame upon us both has been the salvation of our relationship and an inspiration to me. Redemption comes in the celebration of the revelation of the moral failure and blind foolishness underlying our mistakes which opens up the way to effective change. Our brush with damnation comes with the stubborn hubris of rationalizing, covering up and clinging to our mistakes. Obama has given himself life time secret service protection and the rest of Us a life time of living in the shadow of the rational hatred he has generated for the US around the world.
(Reuters) - "Google Inc Executive Chairman Eric Schmidt said widespread U.S. government spying on its data centers would be outrageous and potentially illegal if true, the Wall Street Journal reported.
"It's really outrageous that the NSA was looking between the Google data centers, if that's true," Schmidt said in an interview.
"The steps that the organization was willing to do without good judgment to pursue its mission and potentially violate people's privacy, it's not OK."
Schmidt told the newspaper in Hong Kong that Google had registered complaints with the National Security Agency (NSA), President Barack Obama and Congress members.
According to a Washington Post report on Wednesday, the NSA had tapped directly into communications links used by Google and Yahoo Inc to move huge amounts of email and other user information among overseas data centers."
And now the cover-up begins. See more @
Kids and critters have so much to teach us.
See the story of US Drone Strikes
Watching the above video I was reminded once again of the St. Francis movie, Brother Sun, Sister Moon. I remember the scene in the church where Francis, recovering from PTSD after coming home from war, is in attendance with his parents. During the service Francis suffers an hallucination where in he sees the eyes of Christ upon the cross open to gaze upon him. In apparent agony and to the horror of the congregation he begins to tear at the restrictions of his Sunday best crying out, "No!! No! and then softly, with a smile spreading on his face..., "No."
There is a time to stand and to pay attention and to just say NO. And there are people, few and far between as they may be, who do just that.
10/29/2013:" THE US CONSTITUTION PROTECTS... EVERY CITIZENS' RIGHT..."
"Two Democratic representatives, Adam Schiff of California and Jan Schakowsky of Illinois, suggested that the House intelligence committee was not informed about the foreign leader spying. Clapper, without confirming that the spying took place, seemed to concede that, saying only “we have by and large complied with the spirit and intent of the law.”
Schiff drew a heated and unexpected rebuke from Rogers, who called his suggestion “disingenuous.” The committee has access to “mounds of product” from the NSA, Rogers said. Schiff shot back a direct question about whether Rogers in fact knew about the foreign leader spying, which Rogers said he could not answer without confirming – but invited the committee member to view reams of intelligence in private."
The Fourth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution protects personal privacy, and every citizen's right to be free from unreasonable government intrusion into their persons, homes, businesses, and property -- whether through police stops of citizens on the street, arrests, or searches of homes and businesses. -
See more at:
The glaring point is - the invasion of the privacy of European leaders by the US government appears to be a greater concern to the current government, in all three branches, then is the violation of the citizens' rights as they spelled out in the 4th Amendment to our Constitution.
Was the Constitution hung on the Courthouse wall," In Memory"? I am left to wonder and to Watch.
“Congressional oversight of the NSA is a joke. I should know, I'm in Congress"
I've learned far more about government spying on citizens from the media than I have from official intelligence briefings.”
Congressman Alan Grayson
We have all learned more from Snowden than we have from our representatives.
More on "Monsanto Protection Act"
It’s dead.... the Monsanto Protection Act has, officially, expired. http://beforeitsnews.com/alternative/2013/10/rip-monsanto-protection-act-2784292.html
What the Act did for six months
The "Monsanto Protection Act" effectively bars federal courts from being able to halt the sale or planting of controversial genetically modified (aka GMO) or genetically engineered (GE) seeds, no matter what health issues may arise concerning GMOs in the future. See: http://www.ibtimes.com/monsanto-protection-act-5-terrifying-things-know-about-hr-933-provision-1156079
Some other interesting things to keep in mind:
- The bill was apparently written by freshman Sen. Roy Blunt in collusion with Monsanto, with them helping to craft the exact language of the document.
- “The Center for Responsive Politics notes that Sen. Blunt received $64,250 from Monsanto to go towards his campaign committee between 2008 and 2012. The Money Monocle website adds that Blunt has been the largest Republican Party recipient of Monsanto funding as of late.”
- Many members of Congress were apparently unaware that the “Monsanto Protection Act” was a part of the spending bill that they were voting on.
- (back in March) Obama had no problem signing it into law (not really a surprise, he’s been rather soft on GMO policy).
- The bill will only remain in effect for a limited time, but it’s a bad sign. With the ease that this bill passed, it’ll be interesting to see what future bills look like.
So what do You think, will Monsanto give up?
ROUNDUP - SAFE OR SORRY IN ARGENTINA - BT CORN AND CONCEPTION PROBLEMS IN SWINE AND DAIRY COWS?10/24/2013
On the lite side. Is Monsanto soon to offer their corn flakes as a tasty and inexpensive form of birth control?
Just a reminder:
I do not know the facts I am only searching for the questions.
THE TWO LINKS ABOVE ARE ABOUT THE IMPACT OF SOME GMO CORN ON THE CONCEPTION RATES IN SOWS AND DAIRY CATTLE IN IOWA.
ROUNDUP IN ARGENTINA
But that’s as far as the corporation went in acknowledging its part in the astonishingly high rates of cancer and birth defects that have plagued parts of Argentina in the years following Monsanto’s introduction to the local ag market. Rather, it continually pointed to the fact that glyphosate, the pesticide marketed as Roudup, is “safe.”
The medical community in Argentina would beg to differ—and has astonishing numbers to support their case. One physician who runs a epidemiological study at the National University of Rosario Medical School “has found a 90 percent increase in cancer rates since 1997.” Monsanto products were first introduced in 1996.
The response story continues: “Argentine doctors interviewed by the AP said their caseloads—not laboratory experiments—show an apparent correlation between the arrival of intensive industrial agriculture and rising rates of cancer and birth defects in rural communities, and they’re calling for broader, longer-term studies to rule out agrochemical exposure as a cause of these and other illnesses.”
And yet Monsanto apparently took issue with the story for “lacking in specifics about health impacts.”
READ MORE @:
President Obama has signed into law the notorious Monsanto Protection Act legislation hidden inside of the Continuing Resolution spending bill, which protects Monsanto and its genetically modified creations from federal courts.
Passing up the chance to veto the bill in favor of stopping Monsanto’s increasing monopoly on the food supply, Obama pushed the bill through into a law in a move that reminds us of his failed 2007 promise to ‘immediately’ label GMOs upon his election. (emphasis added)
Contained in the rider (Farmer Assurance Provision, Sec. 735) of HR 933, Monsanto is now even protected (at least under this law) from the United States government.
(Still more lies from our Nobel Prize winning President. It looks like Monsanto just got in under the wire. More too big to fail, too big to jail!)
Read more: http://naturalsociety.com/obama-signs-monsanto-protection-act-into-law-after-promising-gmo-labeling-in-2007/#ixzz2ifQ1svLe
Follow us: @naturalsociety on Twitter | NaturalSociety on Facebook
WAR CRIMES? WHAT DIFFERENCE DOES IT MAKE?
"US drone attacks in Pakistan have killed at least 29 noncombatants since 2012 – deaths that could be categorized as war crimes, Amnesty International said today in a report released just a day before Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif is set to meet with President Obama."
(The US has self proclaimed immunity, as required for the protection of its interests, what ever they may be, for any and all war crimes and crimes against humanity and genocides and violations of international law - inserted by Steve Wilson )
The report, “‘Will I be Next?’ US Drone Strikes in Pakistan” was released by Amnesty International in conjunction with a separate report by New York-based Human Rights Watch on US drone attacks in Yemen. The Amnesty report analyzed 45 publicly known drone attacks in the most commonly targeted region of Pakistan where the Taliban has been particularly active, North Waziristan, between January 2012 and August 2013.
The timing of the report's release puts perhaps the most sensitive issue in US-Pakistan relations in the spotlight as the two leaders meet.
President Obama publicly acknowledged a drone program in Pakistan in January 2012, and promised greater transparency in May 2013. “There must be near-certainty that no civilians will be killed or injured,” Obama said, noting that civilian deaths from drone strikes would haunt him and others involved in the administration’s hierarchy “as long as we live.”
Abdulelah Haider Shaye, a Yemeni journalist who was kept in prison for three years at the request of the Obama administration after he uncovered a deadly U.S. drone strike in which dozens of innocent Yemeni civilians were killed, was finally released from prison on Tuesday. https://www.commondreams.org/headline/2013/07/23-14
Yes… yes…, We the American People owe it You, President Obama, and to ourselves, to be sure that You never forget the US terrorism that You directed in the drone strikes. Strikes and civilian deaths that You never stopped ordering and attempting to cover up. We too will remember, so that You never forget, that You supported and sought to extend the imprisonment of a journalist and a whistle blower for exposing the scope of your criminal actions.
We will remember, We must, even though the painful shame of it falls primarily on US. I am sorry, so sorry that I ever voted for You, President Obama. I listened to You and I believed in You.
What happened to You? Did the system devour You threatening the lives of your family and then did your fears blind You to the value of the lives of Others? You got extended Secret Service protection for You and Yours but then.... drone strikes. Do You really think to fix the world with a few more murders? Do You really believe that if We can simply kill a few more select people all will be well?
10/20/2013 WHOSE WHO?
"Statistics published in Encyclopedia Britannica's 2003 Almanac indicate that 325,000 Gulf War vets were receiving compensation for service-related disabilities in 2000. The almanac lists 580,400 combatants in the Persian Gulf War of 1990-91, yet only 467 U.S. personnel were actually wounded during the conflict. The 325,000 disabled Gulf War vets are equivalent to 56 percent of the number of military personnel "serving in the theater of operation."
Furthermore, in 2000, nine years after the three-week war in Iraq had ended, the number of disabled vets from the Gulf War was increasing yearly by more than 43,000. While the number of disabled vets from previous wars is decreasing by about 35,000 per year, since the "War on Terror" began in 2001, the total number of disabled vets has grown to some 2.5 million.
AFP asked the Dept. of Veterans Affairs if they kept records of the birth defects occurring among the families of veterans, and was told they do not"
The link above has much more to offer.
"One in four of the American personnel who fought in Gulf War, more than 150,000 soldiers, are suffering a range of medical disorders including lymphomas, leukemia, and lung, brain, gastrointestinal, bone and liver cancers collectively described as "Gulf War Syndrome". We have killed more of our own people than they (our enemies) have." http://www.cathinfo.com/catholic.php/US-War-crimes-in-Iraq
“Von Sponeck said that US political pressure on WHO (World Health Organization) had scuppered previous investigations into the impact of DU on Iraq:
“I served in Baghdad and was confronted with the reality of the environmental impact of DU. In 2001, I saw in Geneva how a WHO mission to conduct on-spot assessments in Basra and southern Iraq, where depleted uranium had led to devastating environmental health problems, was aborted under US political pressure.”
I asked him if such political pressure on the UN body could explain the unscientific nature of the latest report. “It would not be surprising if such US pressure has continued”, he said:
“There is definitive evidence of an alarming rise in birth defects, leukaemia, cancer and other carcinogenic diseases in Iraq after the war. Looking at the stark difference between previous descriptions of the WHO study’s findings and this new report, it seems that someone, somewhere clumsily decided that they would not release these damning findings, but instead obscure them.”
Just how distant the new WHO-sponsored study is from the last decade’s scientific literature is clear from a new report released earlier this year by a Tokyo-based NGO, Human Rights Now (HRN), which conducted a review of the existing literature as well as a fact-finding mission to Fallujah.
The HRN report investigated recorded birth defects at a major hospital in Fallujah for the year 2012, confirmed first hand birth defect incidences over a one-month period in 2013, and interviewed doctors and parents of children born with birth defects. The report concluded there was:
“… an extraordinary situation of congenital birth defects in both nature and quantity. The investigation demonstrated a significant rise of these health consequences in the period following the war… An overview of scientific literature relating to the effects of uranium and heavy metals associated with munitions used in the 2003 Iraq War and occupation, together with potential exposure pathways, strongly suggest that environmental contamination resulting from combat during the Iraq War may be playing a significant role in the observed rate of birth defects.”
The report criticised both the UN and the WHO for approaches that are “insufficient to meet the needs of the issues within their mandate.”
The International Coalition to Ban Depleted Uranium (ICBUW) has called for WHO to release the project’s data-set so that it can be subjected to independent, transparent analysis. The UN body continues to ignore these calls and defend the integrity of the research.”
"The news on DU is international but you do not hear it in the US with main stream media or in newspapers. This article below is hardhitting and is right on topic. My question is where is America’s coverage of this hot topic that is affecting our veterans from the Gulf War of 1990-91 to our current troops? It affects the people of so many countries now and will for the indefinite future. Where is the hard scientific medical research on DU for America? Where is the data on how many females of the Gulf War 1990-91 that have had cancer of the breast? Where is the data on the other cancers?
How much of this data is being censored and classified under the National Security? How much of this corruption, military and arms trade, omission of data, going to cost of us in lives of our veterans? How many of your elected representatives are aware of this problem? How much is being paid to clean up the contaminated areas of war? How much is this affecting the native population and their reaction to accepting the good intents of America? How is this going to compare to the old history of Agent Orange and Vietnam now trying to get help from US to care for Agent Orange victims in Vietnam?
Not only was the US using Saskatchewan uranium for DU munitions during its occupation of Iraq, but as late as 1990 Canada was itself processing DU which was then being sent to a US weapons manufacturer. A section of the 1970 Treaty in the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (NPT) prohibits the sale of Canadian uranium for use in weaponry. Overlooked by most Canadian media, the medical study from Fallujah adds to mounting evidence for a global ban on the production of DU munitions, and to considering their use a war crime.
In fact, last Wednesday, Irish parliament passed the Prohibition of Depleted Uranium Weapons Bill through its fifth reading. The DU bill, which drew praise from Senators and had none speak against it, is the second private member’s bill ever to pass through Irish Senate."
The consequences were not slow to arrive. In 2003, the World Health Organization reported a rise in cancer diseases in five provinces in southern Iraq. Air, water and soil were contaminated with radiation. Leukemia south of Baghdad assumed epidemic proportions. By 2009, cancer rates grew to thousands of new cases per year.
The uranium filling boomeranged on NATO troops. In the densely populated Yugoslavia, leukemia symptoms were particularly extensive with radiation levels 10 to 1,000 times above normal. More than 250 Italian soldiers died from cancer-related diseases. As for civilians, here’s just one example. Leukemia rates among new-born babies in former Yugoslavia have soared from one per 1,000 prior to NATO’s uranium attacks to between 10 and 15 per 1,000 now. (emphasis added)
The implication that the UN is bowing to US and NATO pressure is particularly troubling. The political motivation no doubt includes seeking to control medical compensation to US Veterans exposed to DU as well as international political fall out over the long term impact on the people of Iraq. After all, what happens if DU is found to be a chemical weapon? DU was also used by NATO forces in Libya.
“An unacceptable threat to life and a violation of international law” – that’s how the United States’ former Justice Secretary Ramsey Clark slammed the use of depleted uranium weapons. The United States first used depleted uranium bombs during the military invasion of Iraq in 1991.
Read more: http://voiceofrussia.com/2011/03/30/48203222/
So are the cancer deaths of US/NATO soldiers rather than on going civilian birth defects and death of greater concern to NATO and the US? Considering how the process of dehumanization works in war most likely, yes.
"Petraeus, in turn, was replaced at Central Command by General James “Mad Dog” Mattis, who played a key planning role in the US assault on Fallujah in 2004. Mattis revels in killing, telling a public gathering in 2005 “it’s fun to shoot some people…. You know, it’s a hell of a hoot.”
"The first part of the definition (of a chemical weapon) states that all toxic chemicals and their precursors, except when used for purposes permitted by the CWC in specified quantities, are chemical weapons. Toxic chemicals are defined as “any chemical which through its chemical action on life processes can cause death, temporary incapacitation or permanent harm to humans or animals.” http://www.opcw.org/about-chemical-weapons/what-is-a-chemical-weapon
ROUNDUP REDUCES TESTOSTERONE?
“Even at a concentration of 1 ppm, the Roundup was able to affect the test subjects by decreasing their testosterone concentrations by as much as 35%.” (in rats.)
Why 9/11 documents are still classified?
THE HISTORY AND HEART BREAK OF OBAMA'S BROKEN PROMISES
10/17/2013 WE DID NOT GET WHAT WE PAID FOR
WHAT WE DID GET SHAMES AMERICA
The Canadian government has put the United States on a watch list of countries that could practice torture. The mention is made on a secret Canadian government document not intended for public release. The document cites the U.S. prison at Guantanamo Bay and lists U.S. interrogation techniques including “forced nudity, isolation, and sleep deprivation.” Other countries on the list include Israel, Syria, China, Iran and Afghanistan.
OOPS The Canadian government has removed the United States and Israel from a watch list of countries where prisoners risk being tortured, after coming under pressure from U.S. and Israeli officials. The Canadian Foreign Minister is now claiming that the United States and Israel were wrongly placed on a list that also included Syria, China, Iran and Afghanistan. The original document cited the U.S. prison at Guantanamo Bay and lists U.S. interrogation techniques including “forced nudity, isolation, and sleep deprivation.” Amnesty International Canada said it was disappointed by the Canadian government’s reversal. Amnesty’s Alex Neve said, "When it comes to an issue like torture, the government’s main concern should not be embarrassing allies." http://www.democracynow.org/2008/1/22/headlines#12212
What is classified information?
"A statement from the American Civil Liberties Union in response to the Manning verdict indicated that “the government was seeking to intimidate anyone who might consider revealing valuable information in the future. In other words, even if the government might not have been damaged by the leaks, the fact that the leaked information was valuable—and embarrassing—was enough to compel the government to send a message to people who might want to emulate Manning (or Snowden) in the future." (emphasis added)
Anything that embarrasses the US Government is valuable. The point is, We the people are being denied the right to know the excesses and the blunders of "our" government and prisoners who have been detained and tortured are being denied a fair trial because what has happened to them is classified.
"The three whistleblowers – Manning, Snowden and Drake – have all suffered various incarceration, professional and financial ruin, and exile. This is precedent and, unfortunately, what Americans can now expect from their country when they expose unconstitutional and repressive actions approved secretly by all three branches of government."
"WASHINGTON (AP) — Former National Security Agency systems analyst Edward Snowden says that he did not take any secret NSA documents to Russia and that intelligence officials in China as well as Russia could not get access to the documents he had obtained before leaving the United States.
In an interview with The New York Times, Snowden said he handed over all the documents he had obtained to journalists during his stay in Hong Kong. The newspaper posted its story on its website Thursday.
Snowden said he did not retain copies of the documents and did not take them to Russia "because it wouldn't serve the public interest," the Times reported. He said his familiarity with China's intelligence abilities allowed him to protect the documents from Chinese spies while he was in Hong Kong.
"There's a zero percent chance the Russians or Chinese have received any documents," he said."
Back to Basics
The Iowa Legislative Interim Study Committee on Rivers and Waterways is seeking input before the committee meets, Dec. 10. Let them know you care about the quality and health of Iowa’s rivers.
To submit your comments:
- Go to the General Assembly’s home page at www.legis.iowa.gov, and under “Popular Links,” look for “Public Input: Iowa Rivers and Waterways Study Committee”
- Click “Submit Response” to submit comments
- To view others’ responses, click “View Moderated Responses”
10/17/2013 MALALA SPEAKS ON THE EFFECT OF US DRONE STRIKES
In a statement released after the meeting, Malala said she was honored to meet with Obama, but that she told him she's worried about the effect of U.S. drone strikes. (The White House statement didn't mention that part.)
"I thanked President Obama for the United States' work in supporting education in Pakistan and Afghanistan and for Syrian refugees," she said in the statement. "I also expressed my concerns that drone attacks are fueling terrorism. Innocent victims are killed in these acts, and they lead to resentment among the Pakistani people. If we refocus efforts on education it will make a big impact."
This weekend US Secretary of State John Kerry was in Afghanistan to hold a formal discussion with the regions puppet dictator, President Hamid Karzai. The main focus of the discussion was to come to an agreement about leaving 10,000 American troops in the country to fighting.
However, the discussion came to an abrupt end when John Kerry suggested that American troops should have immunity from war crimes.
It is one thing to require specific procedures in the prosecution of alleged war crimes committed by US service members and something else again to seek blanket immunity. In Iraq a similar impasse lead to the "complete withdrawal" of US troops. Maybe that is/was the purpose.
New research on the human cost of the war in Iraq estimates that roughly half a million men, women and children died between 2003 and 2011 as a direct result of violence or the associated collapse of civil infrastructure.
In a study published Tuesday in the journal PLOS Medicine, researchers concluded that at least 461,000 “excess” Iraqi deaths occurred in the troubled nation after the U.S.-led invasion that resulted in the overthrow of President Saddam Hussein. Those were defined as fatalities that would not have occurred in the absence of an invasion and occupation.
And the civil war in Iraq is not over and the scope of long term health effects of depleted uranium munitions used in places like Fallujah is still not being released. We need a Truth Commission. In a democracy the people have a right and the responsibility to know.
Bombings in Iraq killed 20 people Sunday and brought the year's toll to more than 5,000 dead in a surge in violence that authorities have failed to curb, officials said.
Baghdad (AFP) Oct 13, 2013
TWO PARTY REPUBLIC DYSFUNCTIONAL?
The Chinese are pointing at America and telling developing nations that the US Congress has demonstrated that America's two party republic is dysfunctional. The Chinese note with some pride that the Communist Party is not shutting down their government.
On the other end of the spectrum, perhaps the day will come when democracies will have built in safe guards that allow the People to vote directly and quickly from the comfort of their own homes on issues they select when Congress and the President are floundering. Might the People look more directly at the national the issues while our politicians are looking at themselves in the mirror of their narcissism and at the balance of their personal bank accounts maintained by multinational corporations? If not, still I suppose there is nothing wrong with all of us being selfish if all of us get to vote directly since then the majority of the selfish people will rule as they should in a democracy of selfish people.
However, when the representatives of the people in a two party democratic republic are not representatives but only selfish individuals entertaining themselves and lining their pockets with vain two party arm wrestling contests they make a mockery of the utility of the concept of a democratic republic in a capitalistic system. Congress has demonstrated that the sacred principle of selfishness centered in the very heart of capitalistic systems cannot be expected to generate unselfish representatives. We the people have thus been cut out of the equation with elections held for their entertainment value.
Are the antics of the US Government of late becoming to a super power that is responsible in this age of unprecedented globalization for the health of the international reserve currency? "Everybody" said they thought Gadhafi was crazy in his quest to create a gold dinar for oil but then they silenced him. In that silence echoes are now bouncing back from far and wide.
If representatives in Washington followed the example of Winfield City Councilmember Reese who recently demonstrated the capacity of an unselfish representative to put first his duty to the people he was elected to represent, it would be different. As it stands the distance from here to Washington DC is just to great for John Q Public to make the trip but only a walk across the street for the multinational corporate lobbyists who want to keep labor costs as low as possible in all domains all the while jacking up the pay of the CEOs.
Note: I do not know how Councilmember Reese recently determined the balance of public sentiment on the question of a breed specific dog ordinance in Winfield. I only know that he shared a dismayed confidence in his assessment of broad public support for the measure while sharing that he was personally opposed to it. Still, he voted for the ordinance as required by his understanding of the service he agreed to render to the residents of Winfield as their representative.
I am impressed, but cautiously, pending a better understanding of how public support for the ordinance was determined in this instance.
10/16/2013 GLENN GREENWALD MOVING ON
Glenn Greenwald, the Guardian journalist credited with breaking the explosive story of National Security Agency leaker Edward Snowden, is leaving the British newspaper for what he calls a "once-in-a-career dream journalistic opportunity that no journalist could possibly decline." http://www.theguardian.com/media/2013/oct/15/glenn-greenwald-announces-departure-guardian
10/13/2013 TALK OF A UNIFIED KOREA AND/OR WAR
"In 2013, the threat of war has come to its highest on the Korean Peninsula.
While everyone else has been afraid of being criticized for ‘Jongbuk’ and stepped back in fear, the Progressive Party was at the forefront of the anti-war and peace movement and urged inter-Korean dialogue culminating in a peace treaty.
Peaceful Reunification through implementation of the June 15 and October 4 Joint Declarations ! This is the top priority policy of the Progressive Party.
In addition, the Progressive Party is the only political party that is in an on-going communication with the Korean Social Democratic Party(DPRK).
The Unified Progressive Party will make every effort to achieve peace and reunification on the Korean Peninsula.
We, the undersigned, demand the Park Geun-hye administration-
-Free Lee Seok-ki and other members of the Unified Progressive Party arrested under false charges.
-Free members of the Beomminryeon unification organization, arrested in a raid by the NIS in June.
-Halt the effort to remove Lee Seok-ki from office.
-Stop the move to dissolve the Unified Progressive Party.
-Abolish the National Security Law, instrument of repression.
-Ban the National Intelligence Service from engaging in domestic surveillance and investigation of citizens.
-Bring to justice those in the NIS who were responsible for interfering in the last election and in fabricating evidence.
"It's all right for U.S. soldiers to be exempted from taxes, but fines are not taxes. Fines are a penalty for violating the law," Kim said. "It does not make sense for citizens of a major advanced country to take advantage of a legal loophole to shirk responsibility for something they have done."
“Unlike in the United States and other countries, Korea has so far acknowledged diplomatic immunity without a system in place to notify respective governments of diplomats’ violations of the law. As illegal activities, such as driving under the influence of alcohol, have remained persistent among diplomats, we have come up with a way to deal with the matter in order to uphold law and order.”
Starting Monday, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade will notify countries of alleged violations of local laws committed by their diplomats here in Korea and, if necessary, local authorities may request a waiver of diplomatic immunity or expel the diplomat from the country, according to the measure.
But what about Korean diplomats in the United States? Apparently, and to many somewhat surprisingly, they are very law abiding in regards to paying off their traffic tickets. http://www.rjkoehler.com/2009/12/21/will-seoul-expel-diplomats-for-traffic-violations/
Sound familiar? What is happening now in Afghanistan negotiations? It is the little things, the trivia, that may tell the story. Lao Tzu says.. Governing the people is like frying small fish. It sounds like some are getting burned in S. Korea back in 1998 and still in 2009 and now....?
One thing is for sure, the US is not getting thank you notes put on their windshields for parking violations in S.Korea however much We might think We deserve them.
I have no idea how significant any of this is. This party does seem to be attracting growing attention in South Korea. Based on the news we get out of Korea, why would anyone in the South want to be reunified with the North? There must be more to the story.
As of September 26, 2013, totally 4 suspects were indicted after searching and seizing 16 people. The investigation continues into other suspects such as lawmakers Kim Mi-hee and Kim Jae-yeon, both of whom are suspected of participating in the secret meeting of the rebellion group. 
The two major criminal charges of Lee Seok-ki presented in the bill of indictment are as follows .
1. "Plotting insurgency" with a resolution of violent revolution In March 2013, Lee issued the three guidelines for war : 1. Build a solidarity organization for emergency as soon as possible. 2. Perform a large-scale propaganda using a crowd of people just like the time when "the Mad Cow Disease riot" hit the nation. 3. Gather information on military facilities such as U.S. Army camps, U.S. radar bases, and power plants. He made a lecture to 20 people from the CNP Group, which was responsible for the finance and the strategy of the RO, that they should resolve to make ideological and physical preparation ; strengthen security against white terror and preventive custody ; and wage an unconventional partisan war in the rear.
2. Violation of the National Security Act, by praising and inspiring Lee participated in "the rally for supporting Lee Seok-ki" with Hong Soon-seok(a Kyunggi provincial vice chairman of the UPP) and other 400 members of the organization and sang "the song for comrades of revolution." He also violated the National Security Act by possessing materials for "benefiting" the enemy : 90 original North Korean contents including a CD of "the works of the great general Kim Jung-il" ; 15 North Korean movies ; 30 North Korean novels ; 27 materials written by pro-North organization and people ; and 28 other works. 
When South Koreans were asked which country they feel closer to 36.2 percent chose China, more than double the 13.5 percent who preferred Japan. http://shanghaiist.com/2013/05/09/poll_japanese_prefer_south_koreans_koreans_choose_china.php
"Majorities in 13 out of 15 publics polled say the United States is “playing the role of world policeman more than it should be.” This is the sentiment of about three-quarters or more of those polled in: France (89%), Australia (80%), China (77%), Russia (76%), Peru (76%), the Palestinian territories (74%) and South Korea (73%).
The US public is also among those most convinced that United States too often plays the role of world policeman. Seventy-six percent of Americans agree that their country is overdoing such activities." (emphasis added)
As to why N. Korea fails to play well with China and thus misses awesome expanded trade opportunities, I can only wonder. Is this where Iran comes into the mix? Might it be fair to say the North does not trust anyone, not even China until its defensive weapons are well established and perhaps Iran's as well? A balance of power is being crafted and North Korea appears to believe that it is justified in thinking it needs it. They apparently have not forgotten the scorched earth policy of the US as it withdrew. And then there was Bush and his axis of evil. Both N. Korea and Iran are on the same hit list. And others who were on the list, like Libya and Iraq, look what happened to them. But why is N. Korea so unruly relative to China? Some say they are disappointed that China has gone so capitalistic. Whatever, N. Korea wants to be able to defend itself from all directions. The US makes sure they know they need to but as for China....? I will be Keeping Watch.
GOOD NEWS FOR IRANIAN JEWS?
Tehran’s Jewish community has urged US President Barack Obama to seize an "unrepeatable" opportunity to mend fences with Iran now that a reputed moderate holds the Islamic republic's presidency.
The call was made in an open letter from the head of Tehran’s Jewish community, Homayoun Sameyah Najaf Abady, a copy of which was sent to AFP.
INTERNATIONAL CRIMINAL COURT
“Libya has been authorised by the International Criminal Court to press ahead with the trial in Tripoli of Qaddafi’s former security chief Abdullah Al-Senussi.
ICC judges today upheld an appeal by Libya against the original order that Senussi be handed over for trial at the international court.”
This guy is small potatoes compared to Obama, Bush, Cheney and company.
Read more: http://www.libyaherald.com/2013/10/11/abdullah-senussi-can-be-tried-in-libya-after-all-icc/#ixzz2hYfOaRE5
The Lucifer Effect
As I continue to consider what has happened to Obama, and what too may have happened to Bush, I am re-reading the Lucifer Effect written by a man (Phillip Zimbardo) who created a hell and became the prince of demons in a matter of just six days in a mock prison experiment of his own design that took on a dark life all of its own.
Could it be that the context of the Presidency, at both the national and international level is such that We have created a situational monster that transforms good men into... what We are seeing.
In the Stanford Prison Experiment college kids were transformed into sulking, compliant prisoners or raging sexually perverted guards in a matter of only six days.
Something happened to Obama. Something dark and dreadful. And all of Us who merely sit back and play our roles while our civil liberties are rolled back are allowing the situations that have taken control of him to take control of Us.
The spell of the Standford Prison experiment was broken not by the prison chaplain and not by the families of the prisoners, and not by the staff of the psychology department but by an outsider, a young woman, who dared to see the obvious and to shudder and weep and rage in disbelief.
Was Obama's move to allow the people to make the decision on the invasion of Syria a game changer? Is the spell that has been cast over him breaking? Remember he asked for a life time of secret service protection? Compare that to the courage of Malala Yousafzai. Obama is overwhelmed, as well he should be. The job We have asked him to do is our own.
We ask and get more courage and more character from our soldiers than We get from our Presidents. And our Presidents, in their lies, betray the honor of our soldiers in the sacrifice of their lives and even worse, of their integrity.
"The contradiction lies in believing that we were heroes, when the definition of "hero" bares no relation to our actions in Fallujah."
"My command told me we were fighting against evil, my country told me we were heros, my conscience told me something else."
"What we did to Fallujah cannot be undone, and I see no point in attacking the people in my former unit. What I want to attack are the lies and false beliefs. I want to destroy the prejudices that prevented us from putting ourselves in the other's shoes and asking ourselves what we would have done if a foreign army invaded our country and laid siege to our city."
"Petraeus, in turn, was replaced at Central Command by General James “Mad Dog” Mattis, who played a key planning role in the US assault on Fallujah in 2004. Mattis revels in killing, telling a public gathering in 2005 “it’s fun to shoot some people…. You know, it’s a hell of a hoot.”
ON THE NEVER ENDING WAR ON TERRORISM
Considering how long Mandela was on the terrorist watch list and the massive institutionalization of NSA and Obama's betrayal of the expectations upon which he campaigned, it is only reasonable to conclude that the US shall be fighting a war on "terror" for the foreseeable future. It should also be noted that the US considers itself to be above International Law.
"RT: Do you think that we will ever see white war criminals from imperial nations stand trial the way that Rios Montt did?
NC: It’s almost impossible... Bush and Blair ought to be up there. There is no recent crime worse than the invasion of Iraq. Obama’s got to be there for the terror war. But that is just inconceivable. In fact there is a legislation in the US which in Europe is called the ‘Netherlands invasion act’, Congressional legislation signed by the president, which authorizes the president to use force to rescue an American brought to the Hague for trial."
So how can We restore America? How can We rise above the record of wrongs that We have accumulated? How can We restore our civil liberties? How can We limit the power of corporations in our politics? Failing to do so, America has been defeated. The war is over, and We lost.
Obama said, in pardoning Bush for any and all crimes, that We needed to look forward, and based on his campaign rhetoric, We were looking forward to a bright future. But he betrayed Us, and We are not going forward. We are going down. He did not, in trying his best, fail Us. He betrayed Us. Maybe someone held a gun to his family. I do not know, but he betrayed the American People. So maybe he offered to do too much. Maybe he offered to do for Us what We must do for ourselves. Maybe We need to accept that We cannot elect anyone, not anyone, that is going to fix the mess that belongs to Us.
I appreciate that the US is rightfully concerned that our leaders, citizens and military cannot get a fair trial in any world court. The record of our wrongs has created a great deal of global animosity likely to impair the capacity of other nations to fully appreciate the context of our all too apparent failures. Maybe We need to put together a domestic Truth Commission dedicated to airing our laundry. Then We need to set about living by our own and the world's standards as We put into practice the basic principals and the lofty ideals to which We the People aspire. We cannot go on until We have closure on what has gone on.
ON THE NOBEL PEACE PRIZE
Leading the critique of the (Nobel Peace Prize) committee has been Norwegian lawyer Fredrik Heffermehl. He is past president of the Norwegian Peace Council, a member of the board of the International Peace Bureau, which won the Nobel Peace Prize in 1910. Heffermehl is author of the book The Nobel Peace Prize: What Nobel Really Wanted.
"Yeah. So, I mean, this (Obama) prize is probably the most scandalous ever, but it created huge discussion and criticism afterwards. But I think the prize for Obama—he gave the probably most eloquent and brilliant speech that has been held on Norwegian soil when he accepted the peace prize, but I have analyzed his statements and his arguments, and I think they are disgusting, and they are a defense of American interventionism and aggressive wars everywhere and whenever they like. So— I think there has not in the history of the Nobel Peace Prize been a worse affront to the memory of Alfred Nobel than the speech that Obama held."
The "second prize" for the worst affront to the memory of Alfred Nobel goes to Kissinger.
Chemical Weapons. The link below is a must see for those seeking to understand the value and significance of the Peace Prize to the OPCW
Snowden said the U.S. government was "unwilling to prosecute high officials who lied to Congress and the country on camera, but they'll stop at nothing to persecute someone who told them the truth."
THE SNOWDEN EFFECT Jesselyn Radack: "It’s a dangerous time for whistleblowers in the United States, but the effect, the Snowden effect, has been the opposite. We have more and more whistleblowers coming to the Government Accountability Project than we have had before. So I think if the U.S. is trying to clamp down and send a message by making an example, courage is contagious, and I really think he has had a wonderful effect for the U.S. and for the world." http://www.democracynow.org/2013/10/11/headlines#10117
Democratic governments must wrestle the world with one hand tied behind their backs. Not only can they do this, they can do it and win!
When she considered the (death) threats, at first she would say (to herself): "Malala, just take a shoe and hit them,"
"But then I said (to myself) if you hit a Talib, then there would be no difference between you and the Talib. (Taliban)
“You must not treat others with cruelty…You must fight others through peace and through dialogue and through education.”
The schoolgirl was shot by the Taliban a year ago for speaking out about girls' education rights in Pakistan.
Once she decided she could not respond with violence, Yousafzai thought about what she would say to a terrorist.
“I would tell him how important education is and that I would even want education for your children as well. That’s what I want to tell you,” she envisioned saying, “now do what you want.”
It would appear that she gets it. In her shadow I realize what a coward I am. She speaks her truth and then... “now do what you want.”
She reminds me of Gandhi and Jesus. It is not often that happens. And yes, it appears she is a Muslim as were some of Gandhi's best supporters. She is the best example for "Islam a religion of peace" to come along in a long time. She is someone that both east and west would do well to celebrate. For now, not winning the prize may keep options open that might have otherwise closed for her. There is no question in my mind that she deserved the Peace Prize.
When the US and Russia and Israel get rid of their chemical weapons, the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons will have earned their prize as well. And by the time Obama is the age of Jimmy Carter, may be he will earn his too. Let's hope so.
10/11/2013 "When all of life seems lunatic....."
"Anyone who thinks the "War on Terror" will be declared over anytime soon should think about this: the U.S. government just now removed Nelson Mandela from its official terrorist watchlist.
Mandela was put on the list along with other members of the African National Congress a few decades ago, back when the ANC was in fact using violence against the apartheid regime in South Africa. Mandela himself, though, was in prison from 1964 to 1990 (during which time he was probably not that much of a threat to the U.S.), and then was president of post-apartheid South Africa from 1994-1999 (same).
Nelson Mandela You would think that maybe, say around 1993 when he won the Nobel Peace Prize, someone might have considered taking him off the list. But no. Mandela and other ANC members have been able to visit the U.S., but only by getting a special waiver -- Condi Rice said the other day that she was happy to sign those but was a little embarrassed it still had to be done." (7/2008, Just a little?)
Fortunately he got off the list before being hit by a drone.
Obama's War on Transparency
“The administration’s (Obama's) war on leaks and other efforts to control information are the most aggressive I’ve seen since the Nixon administration, when I was one of the editors involved in The Washington Post’s investigation of Watergate,” Downie wrote. “The 30 experienced Washington journalists at a variety of news organizations whom I interviewed for this report could not remember any precedent.”
anchor and chief Washington correspondent, said. “Every administration learns from the previous administration. They become more secretive and put tighter clamps on information. This administration exercises more control than George W. Bush’s did, and his before that.”
“This is the most closed, control freak administration I’ve ever covered,” said David E. Sanger, veteran chief Washington correspondent of the New York Times."
So where are the rank and file democrats? As for the blacks, is supporting a black president more important than supporting democracy, civil liberties, international law and transparency?
10/11/2013 INDIA TIMES ON LIBYA
"In comments made later to France24 television, Zeidan accused a "political party" of organising the kidnapping him, without naming the group.
The Operations Cell of Libyan Revolutionaries, former rebels who had roundly denounced Libi's abduction and blamed Zeidan's government for it, said it had "arrested" the premier under orders from the public prosecutor.
Later, the Brigade for the Fight against Crime, a police division made up of former rebels, claimed responsibility, the official LANA news agency.
The government said it suspected both groups of being behind the abduction."
Looking at the confusion above, if the kidnapping of Zeidan was to be anything more than a diversion for the US kidnapping of Libi, so far it has failed.
"No matter what any state does, no matter how awful, it’s going to say, "It’s necessary for security". A message that is completely predictable and completely uninformative... We can however look and see what the claim of security amounts to and here it’s pretty easy in a society like the United States, precisely because it is a very free and open society, maybe the most (open) in the world.
So we have a huge record of declassified documents going way back that were classified for security reasons but are now available, a huge array of them. We can study them and ask to what extent was security relevant. I’ve done a lot of work on this and others can do it to and there’s a conclusion security is almost always relevant but its security of the government from its own population. That’s the security concern." (emphasis added)
The classified USS Liberty documents, the classified 911 documents along with thousands and thousands of others are classified to protect the government from a well informed electorate. It bears repeating, they keep Us uninformed to protect themselves from Us. In so doing they protect us from the truth about our own government and, here comes the real clincher, for that We reward them.
There are those who would argue that the ruling class in a Democratic Republic are, once elected, within their divine rights or special privileges to protect themselves from the prying eyes and probing minds of the people while the lower class is, or at least should be, content to enjoy the comforts of their dependency and blissful ignorance. What it amounts to is an elected dictatorship and any information with the power to rock the boat is a national security issue and subject to suppression and secrecy.
Of late inspired by my Global Studies I have found myself saying repeatedly, "I can't believe it." Bush and Cheney and Obama really are scoundrels. But We must keep in mind, the problem is ubiquitous. As nations go, even with all the erosion of our civil liberties of late, We still have an unusual amount of civil liberties.
And there is the problem, my problem that is, I just cannot believe that they lie to Us to get elected so they can then go on to serve other interests. The idea is not to be transparent, the idea is not to serve the public, the idea is to deceive and to manipulate. OK, I just did not pick that up in my sixth grade history class. I stood up to pledge the flag because I thought there was something about what that flag stood for that was worth standing up for, and well, I am standing up for that now, but obviously I was and I continue to be confused. I believe in a government of transparent service to the people and I thought that is what the common goal was. I obviously placed an inordinate emphasis on democracy and had an inadequate understanding of the idea of a republic. The US goes around the world "promoting" democracy, democracy, democracy when in fact our current government makes a charade out democracy.
Just last night I watched a Joe Biden in an old campaign tape where Joe with passionate clarity says he would lead the charge to impeach any president who by-passed congress in leading the nation to war. Hey Joe, I am Keeping Watch.
Honestly we are something else.
TRANSPARENCY IN GOVERNMENT? OBAMA'S RECORD IS CLEAR AS MUD
Leonard Downie Jr., a former executive editor of The Washington Post, wrote the 30-page analysis entitled "The Obama Administration and the Press." The report notes President Barack Obama came into office pledging an open, transparent government after criticizing the Bush administration's secrecy, "but he has fallen short of his promise."
"In the Obama administration's Washington, government officials are increasingly afraid to talk to the press," wrote Downie, now a journalism professor at Arizona State University. "The administration's war on leaks and other efforts to control information are the most aggressive I've seen since the Nixon administration, when I was one of the editors involved in The Washington Post's investigation of Watergate."
Libyan Prime Minister Ali Zeidan has been freed from captivity after being seized earlier today. A group of armed assailants snatched Zeidan from the Tripoli hotel where he resides before letting him go. The abduction appeared to be in response to the U.S. operation over the weekend that seized top al-Qaeda suspect Abu Anas al-Liby from the streets of Tripoli. Zeidan was reportedly released after a group of armed protesters fired on the building where he was being held. http://www.democracynow.org/2013/10/10/headlines#10104
Chalk one up for the NRA. And remember the question is not what happened but what is going to happen next? Governments have their plans and they wait for opportunities, or create them through manufactured incidents, to forward their agenda. So far the plan seems to be to crash and burn middle east countries while gathering the oil that leaks out of the carnage.
UPDATE: 10/13/2013 Recent reports indicate there were no armed protestors firing on the building. The whole thing is looking more and more like a Hollywood production to create a diversion to relieve pressure on the fragile government of Zeidan. It worked too, for awhile.
Meanwhile Hillary reminds Libya the US can invade at any time due to the UN resolution passed back in February of 2011 (Chapter 7). For humanitarian reasons of course and We all know there is nothing so "inhumane" as thumbing your nose at the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund.
The Prime Minister was not released by his captors following negotiations with them, according to government spokesman Mohamed Yahya Kaabar: he was rescued after security forces stormed the headquarters in Fornaj of the Libyan Revolutionaries’ Operations Room (LROR).
Both Hashim Bishr, the head of Tripoli SSC, and Haitham Tajouri, the Commander of the First Support Brigade who had been involved in trying to negotiate Ali Zeidan’s freedom, confirmed that Ali Zeidan had been freed after thuwar from Fornaj and elsewhere in Tripoli had stormed the place where he was held.
The Prime Minister himself, speaking in a televised cabinet meeting to thank those who ensured his release, has also indicated that force was used to secure his freedom.
It seems the question of the use of force is an important and a confusing one.
"It (Human Rights Watch) said in a statement: "His brief detention clearly violated Libyan law. The incident highlights the grave security conditions in Libya today. Hopefully it will refocus attention on the urgent need to strengthen both the country's security forces and its judicial systems."
Alright! What a busy day in Libya. The Libya Herald is back up too.
"Of particular importance here is the nature and origin of the rebel groups operating in Libya. The war that followed the toppling of Libya's autocratic ruler, Moammar Gaddafi, sunk the country into lawlessness and broke it down into rebel units with changing affiliations, many of which were enlisted to serve in Libya's security apparatus. However, their loyalties often lay with their commander - not with government. One such group was behind Zeidan's seizure. They subsequently released a statement to the press explaining their actions.
"His arrest comes after the statement by [US Secretary of State] John Kerry about the capture of Abu Anas el-Liby, after he said the Libyan government was aware of the operation," said a spokesperson for the group calling itself the Operations Room of Libya's Revolutionaries.
The faction has promised that it will pursue all other people it sees as having anything to do with the recent raid by US forces in collaboration with the Libyan government.
Al Arabiya was earlier citing the country’s justice minister as saying that Zeidan was “kidnapped,” showing also some video stills that clearly displayed Zeidan with a troubling facial expression and with his shirt unbuttoned at the collar. He was being led out by armed men wearing civilian clothes.
A Reuters journalist was on the scene, reporting that protesters has opened fire on the building where Zeidan was being held, demanding that the group free the PM.
The rebels say they seized Zeidan in retaliation for his government's role in assisting the US in the recent capture of a suspected top Al-Qaeda leader.
"Only minutes before it was first reported that prime minister Ali Zeidan has been released by his abductors, four of his ministers stood together, some holding hands while a brief statement was read by Deputy Prime Minister Sadiq Abdulkarim who is also acting Interior Minister."
As Edward Snowden’s father, Lon, arrives in Moscow to try to visit his son, we speak to American Civil Liberties Union Executive Director Anthony Romero about Snowden and the significance of his leaks about the National Security Agency. "Edward Snowden has done this country a service," Romero says. "He has kickstarted a debate that we didn’t have. This debate was anemic." Hossam Bahgat of the Egyptian Initiative for Personal Rights adds, “We are all affected by the NSA program. We cannot do our work in Egypt, in Canada or Israel or Kenya when we cannot communicate, when we know our emails could be intercepted by the United States security apparatus.”
Greenwald told the senate committee that the U.S. government uses spying in large part to gain economic advantages.
"We now have several denunciations that show that the spy program is not about terrorism. It is about increasing the power of the American government," Greenwald told senators, speaking in Portuguese.
"There are many nations saying, 'We're glad to be learning all this information,' but almost nobody wants to protect the person responsible for letting the world discover it," Greenwald said, referring to Snowden and revelations based on the documents he leaked.
Greenwald added that if "a government is serious about defending privacy of data and freedom of the press," it would protect Snowden.
The fallout over the spy programs led Rousseff last month to cancel a planned visit to Washington, where she was to be the guest of honor for a state dinner.
Libya Herald Newspaper website is down as of 1:30 am.
"Tripoli (AFP) - Libyan Prime Minister Ali Zeidan was kidnapped at dawn on Thursday by an armed group and taken to an unknown location, the government said. (emphasis added).
"The head of the transitional government, Ali Zeidan, was taken to an unknown destination for unknown reasons by a group" of men believed to be former rebels, the government said in a brief statement on its website."
The US must now share the blame for the further destabilization of Libya. Destabilization may well have been the intention of the kidnapping of al Libi in the first place, since the first official comments to come out of the government of Libya following the kidnapping publically anticipated the destabilizing effect of that action. Perhaps the kidnapping of the PM was not left to chance by the CIA either.
The goals and the complicity of all the players will play out in their re-actions. After all, it was not necessary to solve the mysteries of 9/11 or weapons of mass destruction to win support for attacking Iraq and very possibly to the contrary. What is really going on will become obvious soon enough as these events are now used as "excuses" for whatever comes next.
Perhaps Libya, lacking the military organization of Pakistan, fails to have the security necessary to play the games of duplicity that Pakistan gets by with.
Is the US/NATO a friend of the people of Libya - on their terms? With so many groups playing for power, how could You say? How much violence will it take for someone, for anyone to stabilize Libya? If the US starts playing a role in killing Libyans now, will Hillary remind us that in so doing our violent involvement will be even more illegitimate than was Gadhafi's violence?
Just remember, I know nothing, I am only Keeping Watch.
THE LEGAL RIGHTS OF AL LIBI
Ali Zeidan (Libya Prime Minister) told Rumania’s (Abu Anas al-Libi) wife, Um Abdulrahaman, that the government would do everything to ensure that Ruqaii’s legal rights were protected and had already taken a series of measures relating to the abduction.
For his part, Justice Minister Salah Marghani told to the family that the government was in contact with the US authorities to ensure Ruqaii’s legal rights and that he had access to lawyers. It had also been in contact with the International Red Cross. It was being asked to go and see the kidnapped man and ensure that he could phone his family at the earliest possible opportunity.
Speaking at a press conference, he said that he had met the American Ambassador, Deborah Jones, who had promised legal rights for the abductee as well as allowing him to be in contact with the Libyan government and the Libyan embassy in Washington.
IN THE US
Libi’s dual classification – enemy combatant and criminal defendant – is sowing confusion about what rights apply in al Libi’s case. An indicted defendant should be allowed access to a lawyer and an appearance before a judge. And a prisoner of war should be treated in accordance with the Geneva Convention, which specifically bans keeping a detainee at sea, said Eugene Fidell, a specialist in international law who teaches at Yale Law School.
It is my fuzzy understanding of international law, that the alleged crime of "the kidnapping" will not impair the prosecution and sentencing of Libi in the US.
The level of involvement by the government of Libya in the "kidnapping" is still an open question. The government of Libya appears to be entering the zone of duplicity long occupied by the government of Pakistan where publically, drone attacks, especially those that kill civilians, are condemned by the government of Pakistan and that to protect the government against domestic retaliation by its own people even while the attacks are being privately approved to protect US/Pakistan relations/US aid. The end result of this policy in Pakistan is widespread public disapproval of the US. The end result may then be to create more "terrorists" than are killed or captured - but so far, so good or so it appears to Us for now.
Imagine (as keepers of the Golden Rule and as believers in the rule of law We must) what an uproar would be created if soldiers from Iraq kidnapped Cheney in the US and delivered him to the Hague to stand trial for war crimes! And what if the kidnappers said Obama knew it was coming. Well, Obama certainly would not admit to that and survive, now would he? So the duplicity of the government is understandable, but what about the gullibility of the people? Well, as We well know, there are things, lots of things, about our government that We do not want to know. If We knew, We would have to take some legal or democratic action against our own government. But feed us lies and then let us vent against some scapegoat and We will be happy. It seems to be human nature. Dare We look for better options? It is enough for now I think to simply pay attention to what is happening in Libya and Pakistan and to understand We are not so very different.
CHINA BUYING DOMESTIC US OIL ASSETS
Chinese companies have already bought a record $1.52 billion of stakes in oil and natural gas fields in the U.S. this year, more than triple that of last year, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. The three largest Chinese oil companies have about $40 billion in cash, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.
China National Petroleum plans to double overseas production to 200 million tons a year, or 4 million barrels a day, by 2015. The incremental production is equivalent to double Cnooc’s output.
We kill for the oil in the Middle East and then sell domestic oil assets to China? Yes, I am still confused.
10/8/2013 WORLD TRADE AND THE MIDDLE CLASS SQUEEZE
OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) -- Former President Jimmy Carter said Monday that the income gap in the United States has increased to the point where members of the middle class resemble the Americans who lived in poverty when he occupied the White House.
In an editorial, Wen Wei Po said the U.S. “pivot” to Asia had undermined peace and stability in the region by encouraging Asian countries to see China as a threat and as the instigator in regional territorial disputes.
Now, the editorial said, more and more countries are “no longer being used by the U.S. but are improving relations with China rationally.”
State-controlled media in Beijing also criticized U.S. attempts to negotiate a transpacific free trade deal without China’s participation. The Trans-Pacific Partnership, or TPP, involves 12 countries: the United States, Australia, Brunei, Canada, Chile, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand, Peru, Singapore and Vietnam.
Beijing had expressed interest in joining the Pacific trade talks during recent high-level meetings in Washington. Jin Canrong, a professor at the School of International Studies at Renmin University of China, said Washington “shunned” the offer, adding, “So, of course, China is not so happy about it.”
The TPP is often referred to by critics as "NAFTA on steroids" and would establishing a free trade zone that would stretch from Vietnam to Chile, encompass 800 million people—about a third of world trade and nearly 40 percent of the global economy. While the text of the treaty has been largely negotiated behind closed doors, more than 600 corporate advisers reportedly have access to the measure, including employees of Halliburton and Monsanto.
The United States and Canada have been selling tons of corn in Mexico for over a decade, thanks to NAFTA — the North American Free Trade Agreement. It eliminated tariffs on most agricultural trade and was supposed to be a win-win for the United States and Mexico.
For Alvares Correa, NAFTA has been a disaster. While the trade agreement opened up U.S. markets to Mexican corn farmers, they haven't been able to sell any corn in America.
Meanwhile, American farmers have flooded Mexico with cheap corn thanks to generous U.S. government subsidies — subsidies left unchecked by NAFTA. A U.S. corn grower receives an average annual subsidy of $20,000 a year. The Mexican government gives their farmers just $100.
Farmers said that entire towns are emptying because thousands of small farms have gone out of business. As many as 2 million farm workers have lost their jobs — the vast majority headed north across the U.S. border looking for better pay.
When the North American Free Trade Agreement was first signed in 1994, proponents said it would eventually create jobs for the U.S. economy.
17 years later, a new report estimates, the American worker only has hundreds of thousands of job losses to show for it.
According to a report by Economic Policy Institute economist Robert Scott, entitled "Heading South: U.S.-Mexico trade and job displacement after NAFTA," an estimated 682,900 U.S. jobs have been "lost or displaced" because of the agreement and the resulting trade deficit.
U.S. CEOs earn from 400 to 500 times the median salary for workers. For CEOs in the U.K., the ratio is 22; in France, it's 15; and in Germany it's 12.
On the opposite side of the spectrum, the ratio for Berkshire Hathaway's Warren Buffett was 11-to-1.
(BUT THINGS ARE NOT ALWAYS AS THEY SEEM- Total compensation is closer to 100-1)
The pay of the American worker is being averaged against wages in developing countries but the American CEOs and investors are making out gang busters in world markets.
(Emphasis for quick and easy reading added. )