Category Archives: War on Terror

New Bin Laden Tape Five Years Old?

Try this on for size:

A videotape that was heralded as “new” footage of Osama bin Laden by many quarters of the press has been conclusively proven to be more than 5 year old re-released footage, leading to questions about why the government and the media continue to act as willing propagandists for the terrorists while striking fear into Americans by claiming an attack is inevitable. In reality, the tape was being released for the third consecutive time, having first popped up in 2002 before re-airing again in 2003. The footage of Bin Laden was filmed six years ago in October 2001.

Pentagon Pushes Out Taguba

Remember Army Major General Antonio M. Taguba? He was the author of the original report that detailed the torturing at Abu Gharib.

“Here . . . comes . . . that famous General Taguba—of the Taguba report!” Rumsfeld declared, in a mocking voice. … Taguba, describing the moment nearly three years later, said, sadly, “I thought they wanted to know. I assumed they wanted to know. I was ignorant of the setting.” In the meeting, the officials professed ignorance about Abu Ghraib. “Could you tell us what happened?” Wolfowitz asked. Someone else asked, “Is it abuse or torture?” At that point, Taguba recalled, “I described a naked detainee lying on the wet floor, handcuffed, with an interrogator shoving things up his rectum, and said, ‘That’s not abuse. That’s torture.’ There was quiet.”

More recently:

In January of 2006, Taguba received a telephone call from General Richard Cody, the Army’s Vice-Chief of Staff. “This is your Vice,” he told Taguba. “I need you to retire by January of 2007.” No pleasantries were exchanged, although the two generals had known each other for years, and, Taguba said, “He offered no reason.” “They always shoot the messenger,” Taguba told me. “To be accused of being overzealous and disloyal—that cuts deep into me. I was being ostracized for doing what I was asked to do.”

CIA Agents Last only 14 Seconds When Water Boarded

More Newspeak:

Enhanced interrogation techniques

Which really means

Torture isn’t torture if the United States does it.

1. The Attention Grab: The interrogator forcefully grabs the shirt front of the prisoner and shakes him.

2. Attention Slap: An open-handed slap aimed at causing pain and triggering fear.

3. The Belly Slap: A hard open-handed slap to the stomach. The aim is to cause pain, but not internal injury. Doctors consulted advised against using a punch, which could cause lasting internal damage.

4. Long Time Standing: This technique is described as among the most effective. Prisoners are forced to stand, handcuffed and with their feet shackled to an eye bolt in the floor for more than 40 hours. Exhaustion and sleep deprivation are effective in yielding confessions.

5. The Cold Cell: The prisoner is left to stand naked in a cell kept near 50 degrees. Throughout the time in the cell the prisoner is doused with cold water.

6. Water Boarding: The prisoner is bound to an inclined board, feet raised and head slightly below the feet. Cellophane is wrapped over the prisoner’s face and water is poured over him. Unavoidably, the gag reflex kicks in and a terrifying fear of drowning leads to almost instant pleas to bring the treatment to a halt.

Treatment? Don’t call that a treatment.

CIA officers who subjected themselves to the water boarding technique lasted an average of 14 seconds before caving in. They said al Qaeda’s toughest prisoner, Khalid Sheik Mohammed, won the admiration of interrogators when he was able to last between two and two-and-a-half minutes before begging to confess.

‘won the admiriation’ – like he’s some kind of test subject.

Torture is intended to marginalize and support the myths.

Call Your House Reps: Floor Vote on Cheney Impeachment Tomorrow (Wednesday)

(Update below)

Put up or shut up. Do you have a whole 2 minutes of your day to express your dis-satisfaction? Hell, you can do this on your way to get your afternoon latte.

Go to, look up your Congress rep and tell them about the impeachment vote tomorrow.

In an 18-page draft resolution, Kucinich outlined three charges against Cheney: that he “manipulated the intelligence process . . . by fabricating the threat of Iraqi weapons of mass destruction” to justify the war in Iraq; that he deceived citizens and Congress “about an alleged relationship between Iraq and al Qaeda” to justify the war; and that he has “openly threatened aggression against the Republic of Iran, absent any real threat to the United States, and has done so with the United States’ proven capability to carry out such threats.”

The Democrat House Speaker is pushing this vote as soon as possible to get it out of the way.

Here is the text and support docs about the resolution.

This sort of pisses me off. Kucunich should have announced the documents available on his site a week before his announcement and then given the activist organizations enough time to generate buzz and support and then introduced it in the House. He should have produced an air tight case including a YouTube video – done a total multimedia onslaught of incontrovertible proof in as many formats and venues as possible.

Update: After I slept on this I realized how much this really pissed me off. With Maxine Waters impeachment resolution that went nowhere and now Kucinich’s that will probably go nowhere, I think this just further undermines the important and magnitude of the impeachment process – and more importantly, the high crimes of the elected leadership. Filing the articles should be the last thing you do after you’ve done all your legwork with your colleagues and constituents. Is Kucinich doing this so he can say he did something? Is this railroading (showboating?)? Very shitty, sloppy execution and a bit selfish. Still, I called Rahm’s office. I think people perceive Kucinich as a nutter-dwarf jabbing and jumping and this reinforces that perception.

Group to Track Shariah Mosques and Islamic Centers Inside the US

Right here in river city. This is kinda like the Minutemen for Tracking Muslims: (via)

As most of you know, the biggest threat America faces today is from Islamic Jihadists operating all over the world and especially right here in America!

That is where this highly specialized and professional program comes in. It is our task to conduct an extensive mapping of all the Islamic day schools, mosques, and other identifiable organizations in the US and to determine which ones teach or preach Islamic law, Shari’a. Further, the mapping will scale the Shari’a threat by identifying to which school of jurisprudence it belongs, its historical and contemporary call for Jihad, and whether the Jihad includes violent Jihad against non-believers.

I think these guys should join the Christian Dominionists all need to get together and decide who can create the most repressive society.

Granted this is coming from the same source as the ‘Saddam really had WMDs but he hid them and then terrorists stole them’ story.

Bomb Squad Investigates Dark-Skinned Man Recycling Paper

A poet decides to throw out some old manuscripts:

Upon my departure, he called the local police department and told them a man of Middle Eastern descent driving a heavily decaled white Beetle with out of state plates and no campus parking sticker had just placed a box next to the trash can. … Because of my recycling, the bomb squad came, then the state police. Because of my recycling, buildings were evacuated, classes were canceled, the campus was closed.

That man in the parking lot didn’t even see me. He saw my darkness. He saw my Middle Eastern descent. This is ironic because though my grandfathers came from Egypt, I am Indian, a South Asian, and could never be mistaken for a Middle Eastern man by anyone who had ever met one.

I ceased to be a person when a man I had never met looked straight through me and saw the violence in his own heart.

White House proposes retroactive war crimes protection

White House proposes retroactive war crimes protection

The Bush administration drafted amendments to the War Crimes Act that would retroactively protect policy makers from possible criminal charges for authorizing any humiliating and degrading treatment of detainees, according to lawyers who have seen the proposal.

US now detaining 18,000 prisoners in Iraq

Blessed are the peacemakers:

The United States currently holds some 18,000 detainees in two US-run Iraqi detention facilities, Camp Bucca and Camp Cropper, the Washington Post reported Sunday, citing US military sources. In the past month, the US has increased security in Baghdad, leading to an additional 1,000 arrests. The detainees are considered “enemy combatants”, similar to the detainees at Guantanamo Bay, and are typically held for about a year. Some 8,000 of the current detainees have nonetheless been jailed for longer than a year and around 1,300 have been detained for two years. In 2006, the US military held fewer than 10,000 Iraqis.