November 30, 2005


There'll be no mutant enemy we shall certify. Political threads of sad remains will die.

Source: Atrios Blog
Categories: Blogs
Pelosi Backs Murtha Call for U.S. Withdrawal By Erin P. Billings Roll Call Staff Wednesday, Nov. 30 In a move likely to cause a stir among members of her divided Democratic Caucus, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (Calif.) on Wednesday endorsed fellow Democratic Rep. John Murtha’s (Pa.) recent call to begin withdrawing troops from Iraq as soon as possible. [...]
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There'll be no mutant enemy we shall certify. Political threads of sad remains will die.

Source: Atrios Blog
Categories: Blogs

House minority leader backs quick withdrawal
Staff and agencies
WASHINGTON - "I will be supporting the Murtha resolution," Pelosi said of Murtha‘s resolution calling for withdrawal of U.S. troops from Iraq at the earliest practicable date.

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November 29, 2005


The Cheerleader at Annapolis
It's pathetic to see the world's most powerful man, shunted into prearranged venues so he can pitch his snake-oil to college aged boys. That said, Bush's appearance today at the Naval Academy has got to be a new low for the White House public relations team. Apparently the only people buying the huckster-in-chief's bedraggled vision of a democratic Iraq are rosy-cheeked young men who dream of battlefields instead of girlfriends.

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By Randolph T. Holhut
DUMMERSTON, Vt. — Given the intense hatred that the Bush administration has for journalists and independent reporting, the news that in April 2004, President Bush seriously contemplated bombing the Qatar headquarters of the Arab news channel al-Jazeera, isn't surprising.

Categories: Blogs

By Dahr Jamail and Harb al-Mukhtar, Inter Press Service
Ramadi - Hospital personnel are reporting regular raids and interference by the US military as fighting continues in the volatile Al-Anbar province of Iraq.*

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By Juan Cole,
The ongoing trial of Saddam Hussein could prove increasingly uncomfortable for the Bush administration. The first crime of which the deposed dictator is accused, the secret execution of 143 Shiites arrested in 1982, seems an odd choice for the prosecution, and politics may be behind it. Hussein is accused of using poison gas against Iranian troops, of genocide against the Kurds and of massacring tens of thousands to end the 1991 uprising after his defeat in the Gulf War. The problem for the Bush administration with these other, far graver charges, is that the Americans are implicated in them either through acts of commission or omission.

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By Danny Schechter,
“News Dissector” Danny Schechter edits His latest books are The Death of Media (Melville Manifestos) and When News Lies on media complicity and the Iraq war (Select Books). See

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By Democracy Now!
* Video Broadcast of Kidnapped Members of Christian Peacemaker Teams that
Helped Expose Abu Ghraib Prisoner Abuse Scandal *
The Christian Peacemaker Teams has confirmed that four peace activists

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Open the PDF.
Note that the two reasons Bush gave for the war are totally absent from his list of reasons for continuing it.

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In the process of verifying an earlier quote by Rumsfeld I managed to lose whoever had tried to make the comparison. So, I owe this in part to some commenter or blogger or emailer but I can't find who. In any case, Rumsfeld said this today:

Consider the progress of the Iraqi security forces over the past year. In August 2004, five Iraqi army battalions were effectively in the fight. Today the number is 95.
In July 2004, there were no ready operational Iraqi army divisions or brigade headquarters. Today there are at least seven operational divisions and 31 operational brigade headquarters.

In July of 2004 there were no ready special police commando, public order or mechanized police battalions under the Ministry of Interior. Today there are 28 such battalions conducting operations.

And last year there were about 96,000 fully trained and equipped Iraqi security forces. And today there are over 212,000 trained and equipped security forces.

Strange, really. In October 2003 Big Don said:

In less than six months, we've gone from zero Iraqis providing security to their country -- you don't have that chart, there it is -- to close to 100,000 Iraqis currently under arms.

Indeed, the progress has been so swift that Iraq is already the second largest of the security forces in the coalition. It will not be long before they will be the largest and outnumber the U.S. forces. And it shouldn't be too long thereafter that they will outnumber all coalition forces combined. Some have suggested that any statement that raises awareness of these successes is putting an optimistic face on a difficult security situation. Not so. Every time we've discussed progress in Iraq, I have made clear that the situation in the country remains dangerous, and that there will be setbacks.
Source: Atrios Blog
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New Addition to
By Larry C. Johnson
Yesterday's press conference with Secretary of Defense Rumsfeld and JCS Chief General Peter "Perfect" Pace gave us some insight into why Abu Ghraib could occur and how Rumsfeld's lack of leadership allowed such reprehensible behavior by U.S. troops.

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By Norman Solomon
Newspapers across the United States and beyond told readers Wednesday
about sensational new statements by a former top assistant to Colin
Powell when he was secretary of state. After interviewing Lawrence

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Smell it:

WASHINGTON -- As part of an information offensive in Iraq, the U.S. military is secretly paying Iraqi newspapers to publish stories written by American troops in an effort to burnish the image of the U.S. mission in Iraq.

The articles, written by U.S. military "information operations" troops, are translated into Arabic and placed in Baghdad newspapers with the help of a defense contractor, according to U.S. military officials and documents obtained by the Los Angeles Times.

Many of the articles are presented in the Iraqi press as unbiased news accounts written and reported by independent journalists. . The stories trumpet the work of U.S. and Iraqi troops, denounce insurgents, and tout U.S.-led efforts to rebuild the country.

While the articles are basically truthful, they present only one side of events and omit information that might reflect poorly on the U.S. or Iraqi governments, officials said. Records and interviews indicate that the U.S. has paid Iraqi newspapers to run dozens of such articles -- with headlines such as "Iraqis Insist on Living Despite Terrorism" -- since the effort began this year.
Source: Atrios Blog
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By David Swanson
I just spoke for an hour with Dori Smith, host of Talk Nation, a terrific radio show. Audio of her shows can be found here, and transcripts here. Today's should be there by tomorrow.

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By American Progress Action Fund
After two-and-a-half years and 2,110 U.S. troop fatalities, the Bush administration released what it calls a "National Strategy for Victory in Iraq" (NSVI). The problem is, it's not a new strategy for success in Iraq; it's a public relations document. The strategy describes what has transpired in Iraq to date as a resounding success and refuses to establish any standards for accountability. It dismisses serious problems such as the dramatic increase in bombings as "metrics that the terrorists and insurgents want the world to use." Americans understand it's time for a new course in Iraq. Unfortunately, this document is little more than an extended justification for a President "determined to stay his course." (For a bold new approach, check out American Progress's plan, Strategic Redeployment)

Categories: Blogs
Round and round the bullshit goes, where it stops nobody knows...
Source: Atrios Blog
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WASHINGTON, Nov. 29 - The Bush administration, responding to European alarm over allegations of secret detention camps and the transport of terror suspects on European soil, insisted Tuesday that American actions complied with international law but promised to respond to formal inquiries from European nations.

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By Charles R. Babcock, Washington Post
The two defense contractors who allegedly made many of the illicit payments to convicted Rep. Randy "Duke" Cunningham (R-Calif.) worked together for several years as relatively small players in the Pentagon's multibillion-dollar procurement system.

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