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Archive for August 25th, 2010

Oceanographer: The Oil’s Not Gone

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on August 25th, 2010 4:51 am by HL

Oceanographer: The Oil’s Not Gone
University of Georgia oceanographer Samantha Joye says that the BP oil spill environmental disaster is not over, contrary to belief. Three quarters of the oil — three million barrels — remains in the Gulf ecosystem. “I’m not trying to be a ‘doom and gloom’ pusher, but I am trying to be realistic — and we don’t have all the answers,” Joye said. “We’re trying to pretend we do, but we don’t.”



Late Late Night FDL: Whenever, Wherever

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on August 25th, 2010 4:50 am by HL

Late Late Night FDL: Whenever, Wherever
ShakiraWhenever, Wherever, live in Rotterdam, Holland, 2003, on the Tour of the Mongoose.

ShakiraWhenever, Wherever, live in Rotterdam, Holland, 2003, on the Tour of the Mongoose.

What’s on your mind?

Here We Go Again: Obama’s War in Yemen
As we’ve previously mentioned in December, January and this month, Yemen is one of the “roughly a dozen countries” besides Iraq and Afghanistan where Obama’s administration is waging war. And as is the norm in these secret, undeclared wars, we are working hand in hand with unsavoury governments whose own agendas of repression are ignored under […]

Amnesty International Report on Yemen

Amnesty International Report on Yemen August 25, 2010

As we’ve previously mentioned in December, January and this month, Yemen is one of the “roughly a dozen countries” besides Iraq and Afghanistan where Obama’s administration is waging war.

And as is the norm in these secret, undeclared wars, we are working hand in hand with unsavoury governments whose own agendas of repression are ignored under the guise of the “war on terror.”

Yesterday, in two reports, Amnesty International raised significant questions about the legality of US operations in Yemen:

“The USA appears to have carried out or collaborated in unlawful killings in Yemen and has closely cooperated with Yemeni security forces in situations that have failed to give due regard for human rights,” Amnesty said in a report…

“The U.S. government has deployed drones in Yemen to kill those it describes as ‘high value targets’, a practice that has been increasingly criticized as involving unlawful killings,” Amnesty said, without mentioning specific incidents…

Amnesty said it had also obtained photographs apparently showing the remnants of missiles known to be held only by U.S. forces at the site of a December air strike against al Qaeda suspects that killed 41 people, half of them children.

Amnesty said that air strike, in southern Abyan province, was an example of security forces “killing unlawfully by using excessive force.”

And went on to cite both American and British involvement with Saudi airstrikes on Yemen civilians:

Its report said: “Foreign governments, especially the UK and US governments, have supplied jet fighter aircraft associated weaponry, upgrades and related technical assistance to Saudi Arabia.

“These governments will now be aware of the allegations that Saudi Arabian aircraft carried out indiscriminate attacks and other violations of international humanitarian law that resulted in deaths of Yemeni civilians.”

Amnesty said “months of attacks saw heavy aerial bombardments, including from Saudi Arabian forces” last year as the Yemeni authorities, under pressure to confront threats from al-Qaida and Huthi Shia rebels, targeted Sa’dah in the north of the country last year.

“Amnesty has gained information pointing to hundreds – possibly thousands – of civilians being killed in the bombing,” the charity said. (emph. added)

As we know from the New York Times article last week, US military are increasingly involved in their own operations with a major uptick in drone attacks as well.

At the same time, the Yemeni government is becoming every more repressive. As Amnesty notes:

“An extremely worrying trend has developed where the Yemeni authorities, under pressure from the USA and others to fight al-Qa’ida, and Saudi Arabia to deal with the Huthis, have been citing national security as a pretext to deal with opposition and stifle all criticism.” said Malcolm Smart, Amnesty International’s Director for the Middle East and North Africa Programme….

“It is particularly worrying that states such as Saudi Arabia and the USA are directly or indirectly aiding the Yemeni government in a downward spiral away from previously improving human rights record.”

Right on cue, overnight the CIA issued a new report claiming Al Qaeda in Yemen is “the most urgent threat to U.S. securty:”

The sober new assessment of al-Qaeda’s affiliate in Yemen has helped prompt senior Obama administration officials to call for an escalation of U.S. operations there – including a proposal to add armed CIA drones to a clandestine campaign of U.S. military strikes, the officials said.

“We are looking to draw on all of the capabilities at our disposal,” said a senior Obama administration official, who described plans for “a ramp-up over a period of months.”

And the Wall Street Journal conveniently pipes up this morning with an article describing likely bi-partisan support for this new war:

U.S. officials believe al Qaeda in Yemen is now collaborating more closely with allies in Pakistan and Somalia to plot attacks against the U.S., spurring the prospect that the administration will mount a more intense targeted killing program in Yemen…

Such a move would give the Central Intelligence Agency a far larger role in what has until now been mainly a secret U.S. military campaign against militant targets in Yemen and across the Horn of Africa. It would likely be modeled after the CIA’s covert drone campaign in Pakistan. …

Authorizing covert CIA operations would further consolidate control of future strikes in the hands of the White House, which has enthusiastically embraced the agency’s covert drone program in Pakistan’s tribal areas.

And so we repeat, over and over, the same horrors we have imposed on Iraq and Afghanistan. Apparently two wars (three if you count Pakistan) are not enough for Obama.


They Go or Obama Goes

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on August 25th, 2010 4:49 am by HL

They Go or Obama Goes
Barack Obama and the Democrats he led to a stunning victory two years ago are going down hard in the face of an economic crisis that he did nothing to create but which he has failed to solve.

By Robert Scheer

Barack Obama and the Democrats he led to a stunning victory two years ago are going down hard in the face of an economic crisis that he did nothing to create but which he has failed to solve.


Related Entries


Wyclef Claims ‘Trickery’ Blocked His Presidential Bid
It’s not looking likely that Fugee alumnus and Haitian presidential wannabe Wyclef Jean will be successful in his quest to become his homeland’s next head of state. But that doesn’t mean he’s going down without a fight.

It’s not looking likely that Fugee alumnus and Haitian presidential wannabe Wyclef Jean will be successful in his quest to become his homeland’s next head of state. But that doesn’t mean he’s going down without a fight.

Related Entries



Dave Johnson: Congress: Act Now to Preempt the Catfood Commission

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on August 25th, 2010 4:48 am by HL

Dave Johnson: Congress: Act Now to Preempt the Catfood Commission
Congress should preempt the commission from targeting Social Security by making it clear that they will not accept cuts or an increase in the retirement age.

Tom DeLay: ‘Finally I’m Getting A Trial’
AUSTIN, Texas — Former U.S. House Majority Leader Tom DeLay will get his long-awaited trial in Texas ahead of two co-defendants, a judge said Tuesday,…

Michael Evans: Belfast’s Messed Up Minority and their Media Support
A large majority of Belfast is sick. No, not from tainted eggs from the United States, but from a petty, chauvinistic, force-you-to-roll-your-eyes, want-to-be legitimate conflict…


Beck falsely claims Imam Rauf’s wife said “all Americans hate Muslims”

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on August 25th, 2010 4:47 am by HL

Beck falsely claims Imam Rauf’s wife said “all Americans hate Muslims”

As part of an escalating attack on the Park51 Islamic community center, Glenn Beck falsely claimed that Daisy Khan, the wife of the imam who is spearheading the Park51 project, said that “all Americans hate Muslims.” In fact, while discussing the strident opposition to the center, Khan said that hatred for Muslims in America is a cause for concern.

Beck falsely claims Khan said “all Americans hate Muslims”

Beck falsehood: Rauf’s wife said “on national television” that “all Americans hate Muslims.” During the August 24 broadcast of his Fox News show, Beck launched an extended attack on the Islamic community center planned in Lower Manhattan, suggesting that the people leading the initiative to build the center, including Imam Feisal Abdul Rauf and his wife, Daisy Khan, who is also executive director of the American Society for Muslim Advancement, are “anti-American.” As part of the attack, Beck misquoted Khan, stating:

BECK: The administration wants you to believe that this imam, Rauf, is busy being an ambassador for the United States around the globe on taxpayer money and that’s totally normal. While he’s doing that, the wife of this imam is back home in the United States on national television saying that all Americans hate Muslims. Shouldn’t we find out if this ambassador — what he thinks about that claim? From his wife?

In fact, Khan said that she’s seeing “hate of Muslims” in America

Khan: “It’s not even Islamophobia, it’s beyond Islamophobia. It’s hate of Muslims.” On the August 22 edition of ABC’s This Week, anchor Christiane Amanpour hosted Khan for a discussion of the Park51 project. Toward the end of the conversation (11:31 in the video), Amanpour asked Khan, “Is America Islamophobic? Are you concerned about the long-term relationship between American Muslims and the rest of society here?” Khan replied:

KHAN: Yes, I think we are deeply concerned, because this is like a metastasized anti-Semitism. That’s what we feel right now. It’s not even Islamophobia, it’s beyond Islamophobia. It’s hate of Muslims. And we are deeply concerned. You know, I have had — yesterday, had a council with all religious — Muslim religious leaders from around the country, and everybody is deeply concerned about what’s going on around the nation.

Beck played these same comments from Khan on his Fox News show the night before and said (via Nexis): “All right. So, now, let me see if I have this right. Anyone opposed to building of this mosque, it’s just pure hatred of Muslims. It has nothing to do with a few questions like where is the money coming from to build this mosque? Who is involved in this mosque?”

Anti-Islamic rhetoric has been widespread in wake of mosque protests

Opposition to Park51 full of hateful anti-Islamic statements. As Media Matters has documented, Fox News and other right-wing media outlets have used inflammatory, anti-Muslim rhetoric while opposing the Park51 project. Media figures have compared the Park51 builders to Nazis, kamikaze pilots, or the Ku Klux Klan. Others have baselessly claimed that Park51 will “become a command center for terrorism.” Reports on protests of the center suggest that protesters harbor anti-Muslim sentiments. The Associated Press reported that signs at an August 22 protest “read ‘SHARIA’ — using dripping, blood-red letters to describe Islam’s Shariah law, which governs Muslims’ behavior.” Reuters reported that signs at the rally read, “Everything I Ever Needed to Know about Islam I Learned on 9/11” and “Not all Muslims are terrorists, but all the terrorists were Muslim.”

Anti-Muslim protests have spread to mosques around the country. Media Matters also documented protests against local mosques and Islamic centers in the wake of the controversy over the Park51 center. Despite conservative media figures’ claims that opponents of the mosque are not interested in restricting Muslims’ religious freedom, protests against mosques have reportedly also occurred in Staten Island, Brooklyn, Tennessee, California and Kentucky.

Beck has repeatedly attacked Rauf

Beck: “Something is very, very wrong with” Rauf. Beck has repeatedly attacked Rauf and his planned Islamic center. For instance, on the August 24 edition of his radio show, Beck said of Rauf: “Something is very, very wrong with this guy.” He later added: “We are the most tolerant people on Earth that are still standing. We are the most tolerant people — and that’s a good thing — but we don’t tolerate evil.”

Additionally, on August 18, Beck said of the Park51 project: “You look for things that are uniting, and I’m sorry, but the Cordoba Project is not uniting. If you wanted to unite people, you don’t spit in their face. You don’t spit in their face. On the 10th anniversary of — after you’ve killed 3,000 people, you’re going to now build your mosque on there, really?” Beck has repeatedly falsely claimed that Park51 was scheduled to open on September 11, 2011. He has also referred to the Islamic center as “the 9-11 mosque.”


PAC To Gov. Perry: ‘Face Texans Like A Man’

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on August 25th, 2010 4:46 am by HL

PAC To Gov. Perry: ‘Face Texans Like A Man’
An full-page advertisement set to run in several Texas newspapers on Tuesday labels Gov. Rick Perry (R-Texas) a “coward” for refusing to debate and not facing editorial boards.



Rick PerryBarack ObamaUnited StatesTexasPresident

Jon Stewart To Blago: I Really ‘Want To Believe You’re Not A Sociopath’ (VIDEO)
Jon Stewart had former Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich on his show last night, and questioned him about the decision not to testify in his corruption trial. “There is not a person in the world that I believe could get you to pipe down,” Stewart said. “Here’s what concerns me. I would like to see you as a Dickens character. I would like to see you as a victim. But you make it so hard.”


Jon StewartRod BlagojevichIllinoisDaily ShowUnited States

TSA Testing New, More Invasive Pat-Downs For Those Who Refuse Scans
Those who refuse to walk through the new full-body scanners at the airport could be subject to a new style of pat-down, one that’s much more invasive and, well, probing than before.


Transportation Security AdministrationPeripheralBoston HeraldHardwareScanners


What’s happening to The Four Freedoms?

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on August 25th, 2010 4:43 am by HL

What’s happening to The Four Freedoms?
Why would Fox News stir its audience up against the proposed new Muslim facility in lower Manhattan, if a large Fox News shareholder is a member of the Saudi Royal family? On his radio show for Monday, August 23, 2010, Mike Malloy slowly and methodically dealt out facts to validate and explain that apparent […]


Why Doesn’t the Media Have the Guts to Attack Fox News’ Hate-Filled Witch Hunts?

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on August 25th, 2010 4:42 am by HL

Why Doesn’t the Media Have the Guts to Attack Fox News’ Hate-Filled Witch Hunts?
Fox’s hatemongering against Muslims and African-Americans continues to mostly get a free pass in the media.

Fox's hatemongering against Muslims and African-Americans continues to mostly get a free pass in the media.

Feederism: Cramming Yourself with Food Is the Latest Sexual Fetish to Sweep the Nation
We’ve all had fantasies linked to oral pleasures. Now, increasing numbers of people are making those fantasies central to their sexual experience.

We've all had fantasies linked to oral pleasures. Now, increasing numbers of people are making those fantasies central to their sexual experience.

Google & Verizon’s Evil Plan Is Really Bad News for Regular Internet Users
If we wake up one day to an Internet that has a carpool lane for the upper class, it’s worth thinking about the alternatives.

If we wake up one day to an Internet that has a carpool lane for the upper class, it's worth thinking about the alternatives.

Out of Control Egg Producer Flaunts Regulations: Consumers Deal with 500 Million Salmonella-Tainted Eggs
This problem extends beyond the egg industry and is typical of nearly every sector of food and agriculture.

This problem extends beyond the egg industry and is typical of nearly every sector of food and agriculture.


Presented By:

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on August 25th, 2010 4:41 am by HL

Presented By:

Fannie and Freddie: Live Public or Die
The administration took its first step towards resolving the final status of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac with a big conference at the White House last week. In keeping with its housing policy to date, it seems intent on taking…


Fannie MaeFreddie MacUnited StatesWhite HouseFannie Mae Freddie Mac

We Are A Nation of Pinheads
“He who rides with the Klan Is a Devil And not a man . . . ” — Gil Scott-Heron What else can be concluded? Leaders of one of our two major parties are able to repeatedly lie about a…


Warfare and ConflictWar on TerrorismSeptember 11 2001United StatesIslam


Steele, Rubio, And Diaz-Balart Soften GOP?s Immigration Rhetoric On Spanish Language Television

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on August 25th, 2010 4:39 am by HL

Steele, Rubio, And Diaz-Balart Soften GOP?s Immigration Rhetoric On Spanish Language Television

Earlier today, the Huffington Post’s Amanda Terkel reported that Republican National Committee Chairman Michael Steele “distanced the Republican Party from SB-1070″ in an interview with Univision. Steele attempted to reassure Latino viewers that Arizona’s new immigration law is not “a reflection of an entire country, nor is it a reflection of an entire political party.” Wonk Room oberved that, over the past week, at least two other Republicans have appeared on Spanish-language television echoing Steele’s remarks: Rep. Mario Diaz-Balart (R-FL) and Florida senatorial candidate Marco Rubio (R).

Watch this week’s Spanish-language interviews:

Despite shying away from it in English-language press a couple weeks ago, Rubio took to the Spanish-language airwaves to unambiguously affirm that he does not support gubernatorial candidate Bill McCollum’s (R-FL) efforts to bring SB-1070 to the state of Florida. Diaz-Balart also frowned on McCollum’s Arizona copycat bill in an interview with Al Punto’s Jorge Ramos. However, Diaz-Balart insisted that such efforts have “bipartisan support.” More specifically, Diaz-Balart stated outright that Sink has said she is in favor of SB-1070 and, that as governor, she and McCollum would be pretty similar on the issue. However, Wonk Room could only find evidence that suggests otherwise.