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Archives from October 2007
A Trail of American Blood
Rev. WILLIAM E. ALBERTS
A classic denial of reality is seen in the defensive reactions of CBS "60 Minutes" reporter Scott Pelley in his September 23, 2007 interview with Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. Pelley’s defensiveness is an attempt to deny the reality of an ...
"Social Cleansing" from Guatemala to LA
LUIS J. RODRIGUEZ
One of the "solutions" we often heard in Guatemala to the growing gang violence there was "social cleansing." Repeated by officials and common people alike, this literally means what it says: the active and violent removal of alleged gang membe...
The Bicycle Bomber of Baquba
PATRICK COCKBURN
A suicide bomber riding a bicycle detonated explosives packed with iron balls in a crowd of police recruits in Baquba yesterday, killing 28 people and wounding at least 20 others. "I saw many bodies covered in blood," said Ali Shahine, a shopkeepe...
A Real Halloween Scare
WALTER BRASCH
There are a lot of scary things in the world. There’s the "fun-scary"-kids who dress up as clowns, monsters, or fairy princesses once a year to get a month’s supply of candy, which they’ll finish off by morning. There̵...
Attacking Iran for Israel?
RAY McGOVERN
Secretary of State Condoleeza Rice is at her mushroom-cloud hyperbolic best, and this time Iran is the target. Her claim last week that "the policies of Iran constitute perhaps the single greatest challenge to American security interests in the Middle Ea...
Poisonous Espionage
ERIC WALBERG
Four Russian diplomats were expelled from Britain this summer as a pressure tactic to try to force Russia to extradite Andrei Lugovoi, the key suspect in the death of a former KGB officer and proud new UK citizen, Alexander Litvinenko. The expulsion came shortly a...
New Orleans’ Broken Criminal Justice System
BILL QUIGLEY
"We are faced with the daily reality of an imminent collapse of our criminal justice institutions." New Orleans Police Chief Warren Riley Some say crime causes a city to be under siege; others say crim...
Giuliani and Torture
SHERWOOD ROSS
If Rudy Giuliani doubts that sleep deprivation and waterboarding are torture, why doesn’t he try them himself? As the tough-talking Republican advocate of "aggressive questioning," he thinks the "liberal media" exaggerate torture,...
The Epiphany of Matthew Waxman
ANDY WORTHINGTON
In a fascinating article for the Washington Post, "The Smart Way To Shut Gitmo Down," Matthew Waxman, a teacher at Columbia Law School, who was deputy assistant secretary of defense for detainee affairs in 2004-05, calls for the closure of Guantán...
Bush has Time to Run the World
SHELDON RICHMAN
President Bush has been a busy man. Even though the quagmire in Iraq threatens to worsen as Turkey prepares to invade the Kurdish north, Bush has time to undertake the arduous task of preventing World War III and begin the transition to democracy in Cuba. How does...
What "All Options are on the Table" Really Means
FLOYD RUDMIN
Conscious or not conscious of your own bad intentions, you suspect theirs to be still worse. Their notion of your intentions is the same. Measures of mere self-defense are naturally taken for acts of aggression. The same causes produce, on both sides,...
The Second Death of Guy Môquet
V. G. SMITH
Last week President Nicolas Sarkozy expressed the wish that Lycée instructors read the celebrated letter of Guy Môquet on October 21 to commemorate the anniversary of that young student’s death in WWII. At 17 years, Moquet was the youngest of 27...
The Twisted Logic of Drug Laws
ANTHONY PAPA
Robert Chambers served 15 years in prison for the notorious murder of Jennifer Levin in 1986. He claimed that he accidentally strangled Levin during rough sex. Despite his horrific crime, Chambers was allowed to plead guilty to first degree manslaughter and was se...
Pilfered Scholarship Devastates General Petraeus’s Counterinsurgency Manual * Core Chapter a Morass of "Borrowed" Quotes * University of Chicago Press Badly Compromised * Counterinsurgency Anthropologist Montgomery McFate’s Role Under Attack
DAVID PRICE
Editors’ note: This expose of the stolen scholarship in the Army’s new manual on counterinsurgency to which General David Petraeus has attached his name also runs in our current newsletter sent by US mail or as a pdf to our newsletter...
Will History Repeat Itself?
M. SHAHID ALAM
In January 2002, when President Bush named Iraq, Iran and North Korea as the first targets in his ‘global war against terror’–the putative ‘axis of evil’–few noticed a curious omission. Pakistan was not on the list. The t...
The Greening of the Oligarchy
STEPHEN FLEISCHMAN
America’s Byzantine campaign financing system is like the slave auction block in days of yore. As a corporate finagler, you buy and pay for your politician and put him to work for your corporation or in your industry’s behalf. A good day’s...
Corporate Murder in Brazil
ISABELLA KENFIELD And ROGER BURBACH
In the Brazilian state of Paraná, Valmir Mota de Oliveira of Via Campesina, an international peasant organization, was shot twice in the chest at point blank range by armed gunmen on an experimental farm of Syngenta Seeds, a multinational agribusiness corpo...
The Frivolous Investigation of Dr. Sterner
FRED GARDNER
Dog stories sell newspapers, they say. As the winds were fanning the flames towards San Diego last Sunday, the Union Tribune ran one purporting to describe how a pro-cannabis doctor authorized an undercover police officer to buy some pot for his Labrador Retriever...
The Politics of Lethal Injection
JOE DeRAYMOND
The Supreme Court has decided to rule on the humanity of using lethal injection in executions, in Baze v Rees, a Kentucky case in which two inmates scheduled to be killed by the State have questioned the method of their punishment. Death penalty opponents have sei...
The High Stakes in Iraqi Kurdistan
PATRICK COCKBURN
Iraqi Kurdistan Masoud Barzani, the leader of the Kurds of northern Iraq, expressed defiance yesterday in the face of a threatened invasion by 100,00 Turkish troops, and was scornful of Turkey’s claim that it wants only to pursue Turkish-Kurd rebels....
Dan Keating, the Last of the Republican Irreconcilables
EAMONN McCANN
Dan Keating, who died peacefully in his native Kerry on October 3rd, aged 105, was the last of the Republican irreconcilables. The sole survivor of Ireland’s 1919-1921 War of Independence, he refused ever afterwards to recognise the legitimacy of any ...
Caricaturing Islam
FARZANA VERSEY
Don’t they really fancy Islam? The Danes show their love for the Prophet again. On October 25, the rightwing Danish People’s Party used a hand-drawn picture of Prophet Mohammed under the slogan "Freedom of expression is Danish, censorship is not&q...
The Congressional Rip Cord
MARCELLE CENDRARS
"Just as Mrs. Phelps, in Sidney Howard’s 1926 The Silver Cord, destroys the relationship between her younger son and his fiancee, Congress (among other things) destroys the relationship between democracy and justice. And just as the ol...
Inside Israel’s Military Courts
LISA HAJJAR
Should the United States, seeking to recalibrate the balance between security and liberty in the "war on terror," emulate Israel in its treatment of Palestinian detainees? That is the position that Guantanamo detainee lawyers Avi Stadler and John ...
For Halloween, Ann Coulter Dresses as …. Ann Coulter!
MARTHA ROSENBERG
James Dewey Watson, the co-discoverer of DNA, recently resigned as chancellor of Long Island’s Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory for making racially insensitive remarks. But don’t expect Ann Coulter to step down from the public spotlight anytime soon. ...