Tag Archives: Afghanistan

Criminal Big Pharma: They Paid Off Your Doc To Poison You

New UK data finds prescription drugs 62,000 times more likely to kill than supplements

Wednesday, August 15, 2012 by: Tony Isaacs [source]

 

(NaturalNews) According to data just released by the UK-based Alliance for Natural Health International(ANH-Intl), pharmaceutical drugs are 62,000 times more likely to kill you than supplements. In fact, the data collected by ANH-Intl demonstrates that food supplements are the safest substances regularly consumed by UK citizens even though they are the target of increasingly restrictive European legislation aimed at ‘protecting consumers.’

The newly released data found that pharmaceutical drugs were also 7,750 times more likely to result in death than herbal remedies. Both food supplements and herbal remedies were placed in the ‘supersafe’ category of individual risk – with a less than one in ten million risk of death.

The stark contrast between the safety of supplements and mainstream medicine

By contrast, being admitted to a UK hospital or taking prescription drugs exposes a person to one of the greatest preventable risks in society. Overall, preventable medical injuries in UK hospitals expose patients to the same risk of death as being deployed on military service to Afghanistan – both of which are around 300,000 times greater than the risk of death from taking natural health products.

ANH-Intl executive and scientific director, Dr. Robert Verkerk, PhD, hailed the figures as shedding new light on the question of natural healthcare’s safety. “These figures tell us not only what activities an individual is most or least likely to die from, but also what the relative risks of various activities are to society as a whole. It puts some real perspective on the actual risk of death posed by food supplements and herbal remedies at a time when governments are clamping down because they tell us they’re dangerous.”

Verkerk added, “When compared with the risk of taking food supplements, an individual is around 900 times more likely to die from food poisoning and nearly 300,000 times more likely to die from a preventable medical injury during a spell in a UK hospital. The latter is on a par with the risk of death from active military service in Iraq or Afghanistan.”

According to Dr. Verkerk, the new figures should put pressure on UK and European authorities to reduce regulatory burdens on natural health products. “Governments justify the increasingly elaborate and restrictive new laws affecting natural health products on grounds of public safety,” said Verkerk. “They argue that reducing consumer access to food supplements and herbal remedies, with the consequent negative impacts on small businesses manufacturing, distributing and selling such products, is in society’s interest. But the evidence is simply not there – where are the bodies?”

Among other key points presented in the data were:

* Pharmaceutical drugs pose nearly double the risk of death than motorcycle accidents on UK roads

* While herbal medicines can both be regarded as ‘supersafe,’ preventable medical injuries in UK hospitals are in the ‘Dangerous’ category, with a risk of death greater than 1 in 1,000.

About that bone scan and the meds that follow…

Wednesday, August 15, 2012 by: Craig Stellpflug

(NaturalNews) Bone scans can be useful to find out bone density status, but most MD’s use bone scans to sell more bone scans and bone meds. Oh sure, they can tell you that your bones are thin with their technology, but what happens after the diagnosis is a real problem: prescriptions, procedures, worsening bone brittleness and more cancer. If we just assume that we need to be concerned about bone health and treat our bones naturally, there would be no need for bone scans.

The scoop on bone meds

Long-term use of bone meds like Actonel, Boniva, Fosamax and Reclast have been linked to femur fractures. One study found bones on these meds turning brittle at four years. Two studies found an increased risk of fracture at five years on these meds in healthy, active women. These bad drugs are linked to esophageal cancer, necrosis of the jaw, heartburn, abdominal pain, fever, bone and muscle pain, low energy and low levels of calcium in the blood.

The treatment with the drug Infuse for bone growth, causes the overall cancer risk (including pancreatic) to shoot up by more than 250 percent in one year and 500 percent by three years. Infuse also gives about 50 percent of patients the “side effects” of infection, male sterility, pain, bone loss, and unwanted bone growth.

The most damning vaccination study not publically disclosed to date

Wednesday, August 15, 2012 by: Paul Fassa

(NaturalNews) There have been reports from epidemiological studies confirming suspicions that those who are vaccinated often don’t do as well with long-term health as those who are vaccination free.Those epidemiological studies (statistical surveys) have shown that bad health is more common among the vaccinated who survive without serious injury than children not vaccinated.But how and why has not come under controlled animal lab studies until Japan’s Kobe Universityanimal lab study of 2009.This study was reported and peer reviewed in the PLOS One Open Journalat the end of 2009, but has not received much if any public attention. It was brought to public’s attention very recently by homoeopathist and health writer Heidi Stevenson’s article on her Gaia Health blog. (Source below)

Japanese study summary

Here’s the conclusion quoted from the Kobe University study’s journal report:

“Systemic autoimmunity appears to be the inevitable consequence of over-stimulating the host’s immune ‘system’ by repeated immunization with antigen, to the levels that surpass system’s self-organize criticality.” (Emphasis added.)

The initial purpose of this independently funded study was to understand how autoimmune diseases develop from autoimmunity. It was not an effort to prove vaccination safety or danger.

The researchers used mice that were bred to avoid autoimmune diseases and injected them with solutions that contain antigens. Antigens generate antibodies to protect against invading disease pathogens. Antibodies can turn against the host if they become self generated, causing autoimmune diseases.

A vaccination injects cultured vaccine antigens of weakened or dead viruses to create an immune response of antibodies to that antigen, supposedly for creating immunity to that particular disease.

It’s not very unusual for cytokine storms (immune system overreactions) to overwhelm one who has been vaccinated. Vaccine adverse reactions have caused injuries of permanent disability, autism spectrum disorders, or death more often than publicly disclosed.

The Kobe researchers injected the mice that were bred to not develop autoimmune diseases repeatedly with antigens, much like vaccinations are administered to infants and children, to study how an immune system could turn on itself to create autoimmune diseases.

They were pushing the mice’s immune systems to see if and when they would no longer bend, but break. They used Staphylococcus entertoxin B (SEB) as their injected antigens.

The study report did not mention including any toxic adjuvants or preservatives such as mercury, aluminum, or formaldehyde used in vaccines. Antigens were used without the toxic additives normally used in vaccinations.

After seven injections the mice recovered each time with their immune systems intact. But after the eighth injection, problems with key immunity cells began arising.

Damaged cells were observed microscopically and showed signs of early autoimmunity. Their immune systems had started to self generate antibodies for autoimmune reactions after repeated antigen inoculations. (Source below)

FDA drug reviewer: ‘one manager threatened my children’

Wednesday, August 15, 2012 by: Jon Rappoport

(NaturalNews) In a stunning interview with Truthout’s Martha Rosenberg, former FDA drug reviewer, Ronald Cavanaugh, exposes the FDA as a relentless criminal mafia protecting its client, Big Pharma, with a host of mob strategies.http://truth-out.orgCavanaugh: “…widespread racketeering, including witness tampering and witness retaliation.””I was threatened with prison.””One [FDA] manager threatened my children… I was afraid that I could be killed for talking to Congress and criminal investigators.”Cavanaugh reviewed new drug applications made to the FDA by pharmaceutical companies. He was one of the holdouts at the Agency who insisted that the drugs had to be safe and effective before being released to the public.

But honest appraisal wasn’t part of the FDA culture, and Cavanaugh swam against the tide, until he realized his life and the life of his children was on the line.

What was his secret task at the FDA? “Drug reviewers were clearly told not to question drug companies and that our job was to approve drugs.” In other words, rubber stamp them. Say the drugs were safe and effective when they were not.

Cavanaugh’s revelations are astonishing. He recalls a meeting where a drug-company representative flat-out stated that his company had paid the FDA for a new-drug approval. Paid for it. As in bribe.

He remarks that the drug pyridostigmine, given to US troops to prevent the later effects of nerve gas, “actually increased the lethality” of certain nerve agents.

Cavanaugh recalls being given records of safety data on a drug—and then his bosses told him which sections not to read. Obviously, they knew the drug was dangerous and they knew exactly where, in the reports, that fact would be revealed.

Read the entire landmark interview for yourself and see what the FDA really is. We are not dealing with isolated incidents of cheating and lying. We are not dealing with a few isolated bought-off FDA employees. The situation at the FDA isn’t correctable with a few firings. This is an ongoing criminal enterprise, and any government official, serving in any capacity, who has become aware of it and has not taken action, is an accessory to mass poisoning of the population.

Twelve years ago, the cat was let out of the bag. Dr. Barbara Starfield, writing in the Journal of the American Medical Association, on July 26, 2000, in a review titled, “Is US health really the best in the world,” exposed the fact that FDA-approved medical drugs kill 106,000 Americans per year.

Eli Lilly admits to more than $200 million dollars worth of doctor payoffs

Wednesday, August 15, 2012 by: Willow Tohi

(NaturalNews) Prozac. Cialis. Cymbalta. If you have a television or read magazines, you’ve heard of their drugs. Eli Lilly, out of Indiana, makes billions of dollars every year off the sale of their patented chemicals, which are used to suppress the symptoms of disease in the human body. Founded by a chemist in the late 19th century; today the pharmaceutical giant has offices in 18 countries, and its products are sold in 125 countries, with revenues exceeding $20 billion annually.Most of their arsenal is available in other countries for much less money than it is here in the United States, as is the case with most prescription medication. The reason, the pharmaceutical industry claims, is that the health care systems of other countries demands affordable medication, and they need somebody somewhere to foot the research bill, so they can get the next patents lined up before others expire, allowing generic versions of their drugs to become available on the market. That leaves us Americans, with our broken healthcare system, footing the bill of their continued financial success.We’re not only footing the bill, we have to deal with how the pharmaceutical machine warps the medical system. While historically a trade secret, it is standard operating procedure for pharmaceutical giants to pay doctors and other healthcare professionals to promote their drugs. Seducing doctors into becoming mouthpieces for a share of their bottom line is where it begins, but it ends up dictating your options.

A history of questionable ethics

Beginning in 2012, all drug and medical device companies will be required to report their promotional expenditure numbers to the federal government, but several companies started disclosing their information in 2009. According to the disclosed information, last year Eli Lilly paid out more than $200 million in payments to doctors and healthcare providers for promoting their drugs. ProPublica.org’s Dollars for Docs database is tracking 11 other companies’ disclosures as well.

The reason this information has been disclosed in Eli Lilly’s case is because Eli Lilly was involved in a criminal settlement, and was ordered to disclose these payments, since 2009. They agreed to pay $1.4 billion to settle criminal and civil allegations of promoting drugs for unapproved uses. An official from the FDA testified in a court of law that Eli Lilly concealed the risks of its schizophrenia drug Zyprexa from U.S. officials, knowing the serious health risks it caused. They defrauded Medicare/Medicaid and blatantly put profit over the concern of the consumer.

The disclosure documents say the payments were for speaking, consulting, and research, as well as travel and meal reimbursement. You can look up the breakdown of the payments; how much was paid into your state, if your doctor was among those paid. The data provides insights into how firms adapt their strategies over time, even though complete analysis has proved challenging. So few companies report their data, and the data that is reported is inconsistent in both content and format. Its unclear exactly how much money is being spent where, and by whom. Needless to say, there will be more on this story in the future.

The transparency of the newly required disclosures has some companies reevaluating the current strategy. Most of the pharmaceutical giants have begun to reduce their promotional expenditures, since they started disclosing the figures. Most of them offer explanations such as, “normal year-to-year fluctuations.” Experts predict physicians will begin backing away from these arrangements as well, as the increased scrutiny of the pharmaceutical sales practices also exposes their names and pay. Some doctors are raking in a quarter of a million dollars, but actually claim they “wouldn’t want the appearance of being influenced by anything the company gave” them. Interesting choice of words, huh? [read more]

 

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Mefloquine human drug trials: CNN Transcript

 

WINKENWARDE: It’s our policy that they receive the information. That’s my policy. That’s the Department of Defense policy. So that’s our policy and we intend it to be practiced in every single situation.MANN: Is it happening? Because our research suggests it’s not happening. It suggests that a lot of soldiers are giventhis drug and have no idea that it’s going to have any side effects whatsoever.WINKENWARDE: Well, if that’s true, that’s not our policy, and that’s not what we would want to happen. As I had just indicated, we are redoubling our efforts to make sure that what in fact is our policy is what in fact isbeing done. I have — any anecdote or report or concern otherwise is always something that we want to know about.MANN: But would it be news to you? Forgive me. I say this with respect. You’re the assistant secretary of defense for health affairs, and what we’re hearing from everyone we’ve talked to is that soldiers have no idea what this drug

might be doing to them. And you’re telling me that no one has ever mentioned that to you, that the soldiers are notgetting the information?WINKENWARDE: What you’re telling me is something you’ve heard. It’s a report from you. Perceptions andanecdote. I don’t have any survey information. I don’t have any hard information. I have not been presented with any information.If you’d like to secure that information for me and bring it to my attention, I’d be glad to look at it.MANN: Talking to you, I feel like I’m being unfair, and I’ll tell you why. I’m asking you all of these questions aboutwhat it is the military is doing out in the field, and you seem to be answering me honestly and earnestly that thepolicy is of a particular kind. But what’s happening out in the field is beyond you. It sounds like you don’t know how this drug is being used and that when these concerns are being raised your best and most helpful answer is, “I needto have information.”Why don’t you already have this information?WINKENWARDE: We do have the information. We don’t have information that suggests what you’re saying. Wehave some information that would not suggest what you’re saying.MANN: Without reference to the policy, be very clear on that, are you telling me, for example, that military personnel who get this drug get information packets and medication guides with it? You’re telling me that their medical records are complete when they’re getting these drugs that they’re being screened for these drugs when they enter the military, to make sure that those drugs are appropriate to them and they’re being screened for these drugs whenthey leave the military, to make sure they haven’t got adverse effects? Is that your factual understanding of what’shappening?WINKENWARDE: That’s our policy. That’s our approach.MANN: Once again, forgive me for interrupting. I know what the policy is and you’re being very clear about that.What I’m asking you is, do you know what is actually happening to the men and women who get this drug?WINKENWARDE: Yes, we do.MANN: And you are convinced the drug is going out only to the right people, they are being properly informed, aswell informed as civilians are, and they’re being screened for taking the drug to make sure they don’t have prehistories, and to make sure when they leave the military they don’t have problems and that it’s being noted in their records?WINKENWARDE: You’re asking — what I hear you asking is, how precisely are you executing against your policystandard, and what I can tell you based on the information that I have is that we’re executing effectively against that policy standard.Is it absolutely at 100 percent? Based on what you’ve told me, I would say it’s not. But that’s not our goal. That’s notour policy. That’s not our desired approach. And so we absolutely want to and intend in every way to use this medication appropriately, to give it out to where it’s needed, to not prescribe it where it’s not needed and to use it to save people’s lives, to protect them from a lethal disease.I want to make sure that we come back to that because, again, there are risks and benefits in anything that we do in medicine and healthcare, and so when we’re dealing with a very real probability of individual — not just an individual,but many individuals, contracting malaria, we have to take steps to protect them and use the best available medications and approaches that we have.(END VIDEOTAPE)MANN: We take a break now. When we come back, a public health expert with a different view of the drug.Stay with us.(COMMERCIAL BREAK)MANN: Canadian troops also took Lariam in Afghanistan and before that deployed as peacekeepers in Rwanda and Somalia. Somalia was a turning point for the Canadian forces when one of its crack units became mired in thescandal over the…..

 


The Rise Of The American Gestapo : Kidnapping, Beating, Sexual Assualt, And Torture

 

Beneath the veil of nationalistic propaganda the Department of Homeland Security has become a modern-day reincarnation of the Nazi Gestapo.

The Gestapo was nothing more the NAZI Germany’s secret police and secret police are only used by authoritarian regimes.

Many have been brainwashed by the mass media to accept the use of secret police but throughout governments choosing to employ such agencies have only done so to be able to maintain control over the citizenry while conducting the most heinous crimes.

The Salt Pit – Secret CIA Black Site Used To Torture Disappeared Kidnapping Victims

Secret police (sometimes political police) are an intelligence agencies and or police agency, law enforcement office which operates in secrecy and also quite often beyond the law to protect the political power of an individual dictator or an authoritarian political regime.

Instead of transparently enforcing the rule of law and being subject to public scrutiny as ordinary police agencies do, secret police organizations are specifically intended to operate beyond and above the law in order to suppress political dissent through clandestine acts of terror and intimidation (such as kidnapping, coercive interrogation, torture, internal exile, forced disappearance, and assassination) targeted against political enemies of the ruling authority.

Secret police forces are accountable only to the executive branch of the government, sometimes only to a dictator. They operate entirely or partially in secrecy, that is, most or all of their operations are obscure and hidden from the general public and government except for the topmost executive officials. This semi-official capacity allows the secret police to bolster the government’s control over their citizens while also allowing the government to deny prior knowledge of any violations of civil liberties.”

What follows is the story of yet another man kidnapped by the CIA and smuggled to a CIA torture prison without due process or oversight. The media confuses the public calling the program Extraordinary Rendition. With Extraordinary done internationally without the oversight of a judge (An international crime against humanity) and Rendition meaning Kidnapping.

Following the first-hand account of what occurred is the history of the case and then a look at the NAZI secret police AKA the Gestapo, and the tactics of such secret police – such as the forced disappearance El-Masri faced.

Then decide for yourself if the US government is employing the same tactics as past and modern governments that have been labeled totalitarian authoritarian regimes.
Statement: Khaled El-Masri

BIOGRAPHY
Khaled El-Masri is a German citizen who resides near Neu Ulm, Germany. El-Masri was born in Kuwait in 1963 to Lebanese parents. He moved to Germany in 1985 to escape the Lebanese War. He became a German citizen in 1995, married in 1996 and has six young children. He is a carpenter by trade and prior to his abduction was employed as a car salesman. El-Masri was detained from December 31, 2003 through May 28, 2004 in Macedonia and Afghanistan where he was held in the CIA prison known as the “Salt Pit.” Currently El-Masri is unable to find employment.

STATEMENT
WASHINGTON – I have come to America seeking three things: an acknowledgement that the United States government is responsible for kidnapping, abusing and rendering me to a CIA “black site” prison; an explanation as to why I was singled out for this treatment; and an apology, because I am an innocent man who has never been charged with any crime.

Almost one year ago the American Civil Liberties Union, on my behalf, filed a lawsuit against George Tenet, the former director of the CIA, other CIA officials and U.S.-based aviation corporations that owned and operated the airplanes used in my abduction. For reasons I do not fully understand, the court decided not to hear my case because the government claimed that allowing the case to proceed would reveal state secrets, even though the facts of my mistreatment have been widely reported in American and international media.

This is not democracy. In my opinion, this is how you establish a dictatorial regime. Countries are occupied, people are killed, and we cannot say anything because it’s all considered a state secret. Freedom and justice are disrespected, as are basic morals and values. And if you don’t keep quiet after you are abused, you are considered a threat to international or national security. But I will not be scared into being silent. I will continue to fight for this case until I prevail or until I die. And I will fight for morality, for principles, for the values I believe in, and for my family.

Here is my story. On December 31, 2003, I boarded a bus in Ulm, Germany for a holiday in Skopje, Macedonia. When the bus crossed the border into Macedonia, Macedonian officials confiscated my passport and detained me for several hours. Eventually, I was transferred to a hotel where I was held for 23 days. I was guarded at all times, the curtains were always drawn, I was never permitted to leave the room, I was threatened with guns, and I was not allowed to contact anyone. At the hotel, I was repeatedly questioned about my activities in Ulm, my associates, my mosque, meetings with people that had never occurred, or associations with people I had never met. I answered all of their questions truthfully, emphatically denying their accusations. After 13 days I went on a hunger strike to protest my confinement.

On January 23, 2004, seven or eight men entered the hotel room and forced me to record a video saying I had been treated well and would soon be flown back to Germany. I was handcuffed, blindfolded, and placed in a car. The car eventually stopped and I heard airplanes. I was taken from the car, and led to a building where I was severely beaten by people’s fists and what felt like a thick stick. Someone sliced the clothes off my body, and when I would not remove my underwear, I was beaten again until someone forcibly removed them from me. I was thrown on the floor, my hands were pulled behind me, and someone’s boot was placed on my back. Then I felt something firm being forced inside my anus.

I was dragged across the floor and my blindfold was removed. I saw seven or eight men dressed in black and wearing black ski masks. One of the men placed me in a diaper and a track suit. I was put in a belt with chains that attached to my wrists and ankles, earmuffs were placed over my ears, eye pads over my eyes, and then I was blindfolded and hooded. After being marched to a plane, I was thrown to the floor face down and my legs and arms were spread-eagled and secured to the sides of the plane. I felt two injections, and I was rendered nearly unconscious. At some point, I felt the plane land and take off again. When it landed again, I was unchained and taken off the plane. It felt very warm outside, and so I knew I had not been returned to Germany. I learned later that I was in Afghanistan.

Once off the plane, I was shoved into the back of a vehicle. After a short drive, I was dragged out of the car, pushed roughly into a building, thrown to the floor, and kicked and beaten on the head, the soles of my feet, and the small of my back. I was left in a small, dirty, cold concrete cell. There was no bed and one dirty, military-style blanket and some old, torn clothes bundled into a thin pillow. I was extremely thirsty, but there was only a bottle of putrid water in cell. I was refused fresh water.

That first night I was interrogated by six or eight men dressed in the same black clothing and ski masks, as well as a masked American doctor and a translator. They stripped me of my clothes, photographed me, and took blood and urine samples. I was returned to my cell, where I would remain in solitary confinement, with no reading or writing materials, and without once being permitted outside to breathe fresh air, for more than four months. Ultimately, I was interrogated three or four times, always by the same man, with others who were dressed in black clothing and ski masks, and always at night. The man who interrogated me threatened me, insulted me, and shoved me. He interrogated me about whether I had taken a trip to Jalalabad using a false passport; whether I had attended Palestinian training camps; and whether I knew September 11 conspirators or other alleged extremists. As in Macedonia, I truthfully denied their accusations. Two men who participated in my interrogations identified themselves as Americans. My requests to meet with a representative of the German government, a lawyer, or to be brought before a court, were repeatedly ignored.

In March, I, along with several other inmates, commenced a hunger strike to protest our confinement without charges. After 27 days without food, I was allowed to meet with two unmasked Americans, one of whom was the prison director and the second an even higher official whom other inmates referred to as “the Boss.” I pleaded with them to either release me or bring me to court, but the American prison director replied that he could not release me without permission from Washington. He also said that I should not be detained in the prison. On day 37 of my hunger strike I was dragged into an interrogation room, tied to a chair, and a feeding tube was forced through my nose to my stomach. After the force-feeding, I became extremely ill and suffered the worst pain of my life.

Near the beginning of May, I was brought into the interrogation room to meet an American who identified himself as a psychologist. He told me he had traveled from Washington D.C. to check on me, and promised I would soon be released. Soon thereafter, I was interrogated again by a native German speaker named “Sam,” the American prison director, and an American translator. I was warned that as a condition of my release, I was never to mention what had happened to me, because the Americans were determined to keep the affair a secret.

On May 28, I was led out of my cell, blindfolded and handcuffed. I was put on a plane and chained to the seat. I was accompanied by Sam and also heard the voices of two or three Americans. Sam informed me that the plane would land in a European country other than Germany, because the Americans did not want to leave clear traces of their involvement in my ordeal, but that I would eventually continue on to Germany. I believed I would be executed rather than returned home.

When the plane landed, I was placed in a car, still blindfolded, and driven up and down mountains for hours. Eventually, I was removed from the car and my blindfold removed. My captors gave me my passport and belongings, sliced off my handcuffs, and told me to walk down a dark, deserted road and not to look back. I believed I would be shot in the back and left to die, but when I turned the bend, there were armed men who asked me why I was in Albania and took my passport. The Albanians took me to the airport, and only when the plane took off did I believe I was actually returning to Germany. When I returned I had long hair and beard, and had lost 40 pounds. My wife and children had left our house in Ulm, believing I had left them and was not coming back. Now we are together again in Germany.
Case History:

Khalid El-Masri

Khalid El-Masri is a German citizen who was kidnapped in the Republic of Macedonia,[3] flown to Afghanistan, beaten, stripped, sexually violated while searched,[4] and interrogated and tortured by the CIA for several months as a part of the War on Terror, and then released after a case of mistaken identity was realized. His imprisonment was apparently due to a misunderstanding that arose concerning the similarity of the spelling of El-Masri’s name with the spelling of suspected terrorist al-Masri[5] (the names are spelled the same way when using Arabic script).

[…]
Arrest and detention

El-Masri travelled from his home in Ulm to go on vacation in Skopje at the end of 2003. He was detained by Macedonian border officials on December 31, 2003, because his name was identical (except for variations in Roman transliteration) to that of Khalid al-Masri, an alleged mentor to the al-Qaeda Hamburg cell who has not been apprehended, and because of suspicion that his German passport was a forgery. He was held in a motel in Macedonia for over three weeks and questioned about his activities, his associates, and the mosque he attended in Ulm.

The Macedonian authorities also contacted the local CIA station, who in turn contacted the agency’s headquarters in Langley, Virginia. A December 4, 2005, article in the Washington Post said that an argument arose within the CIA over whether they should remove him from Macedonia in [the CIA’s international kidnapping program that violates internal law water downed down by the media using the the term] extraordinary rendition. The decision to do so was made by the head of the al Qaeda division of the CIA’s Counter-terrorism Center on the basis of a hunch he was involved in terrorism.[7] The local authorities released him on January 23, 2004 and American security officials, described in an MSNBC article as members of a “black snatch team”, came to Skopje, and detained him. El-Masri alleges that they beat him, stripped him naked, drugged him, and gave him an enema. He was then dressed in a diaper and a jumpsuit, and flown to Baghdad, then immediately to “the salt pit“, a covert CIA interrogation center in Afghanistan which contained prisoners from Pakistan, Tanzania, Yemen and Saudi Arabia.[8]
Afghanistan detention

El-Masri wrote in the Los Angeles Times that, while held in Afghanistan, he was beaten and repeatedly interrogated. He has also claimed that he was sodomized.[5] He was kept in a bare, squalid cell, given only meager rations to eat and putrid water to drink. In February, CIA officers in Kabul began to suspect his passport was genuine. The passport was sent to the CIA headquarters in Langley where in March the CIA’s Office of Technical Services concluded it was indeed genuine. Discussion over what to do with El-Masri included secretly transporting him back to Macedonia, without informing German authorities, dumping him, and denying any claims he made.[citation needed] In the aftermath of the detention, U.S. officials requested non-disclosure from the German government on the grounds that it feared, “exposure of a covert action program designed to capture terrorism suspects abroad and transfer them among countries, and possible legal challenges to the CIA from Mr Masri and others with similar allegations.”[9]

In March 2004 El-Masri took part in a hunger strike, demanding that his captors afford him due process or watch him die. After 27 days without eating, he forced a meeting with the prison director and a CIA officer known as “The Boss”. They conceded he should not be imprisoned but refused to release him. El-Masri continued his hunger strike for 10 more days until he was force-fed and given medical attention. He had lost more than 60 pounds since his abduction in Skopje.

While imprisoned in Afghanistan, Masri befriended several other detainees, and they all memorized each other’s telephone numbers so that if one was released they could contact the others’ families. One of these detainees, an Algerian named Laid Saidi, was recently released and his description of his capture and detention closely matches that of El-Masri.[10]

El-Masri reports that “high-value detainee” Majid Khan was held in the salt pit at the same time as he was.[11] Khan spent a further three and a half years in CIA custody prior to being transferred to Guantanamo on September 5, 2006.
Release and CIA response

In April 2004, CIA Director George Tenet learned that El-Masri was being wrongfully detained. National Security Advisor Condoleezza Rice learned of his detention in early May and ordered his release.[8]El-Masri was released on May 28 following a second order from Rice.[8] They flew him out of Afghanistan and released him at night on a desolate road in Albania, without apology, or funds to return home.He claimed that at the time he believed his release was a ruse, and he would be executed. He was eventually intercepted by Albanian guards, who believed him to be a terrorist due to his haggard and unkempt appearance. He was subsequently reunited with his wife who had returned to her family in Lebanon, with their children, because she thought her husband had abandoned them. Using isotope analysis, scientists at the Bavarian archive for geology in Munich analyzed his hair and verified that he was malnourished during his disappearance.[12]

“Frances”, the CIA analyst who mistakenly recommended El-Masri’s detention and rendition was reportedly not punished or fired.[citation needed] In fact, according to reports, she has since been promoted to chief of the agency’s Global Jihad unit in charge of hunting al-Qaida and is part of the President’s inner circle as his Director for Counterterrorism. “Elizabeth” (her first name), the CIA lawyer who approved the seizure of El-Masri, was reprimanded but continued to work for the agency as legal advisor to its Near East division.[13]
Subsequent events related to his capture

A November 9, 2005 Reuters story stated that a German prosecutor is investigating El-Masri’s kidnapping “by persons unknown”, and that another lawyer, Manfred Gnjidic, would be flying to the U.S. to file a civil compensation suit.[14] The Reuters story says American authorities have neither confirmed nor denied any element of El-Masri’s story.
According to a December 4, 2005, article in the Washington Post, the CIA’s Inspector General is investigating a series of “erroneous renditions [kidnappings]“, including El-Masri’s.[7] The article was written by Dana Priest, the journalist who broke the story on the covert interrogation centres — the “black sites“.
On December 5, 2005, German Chancellor Angela Merkel said that the United States had acknowledged holding El-Masri in error.[15]
On December 6, 2005, the American Civil Liberties Union helped El-Masri file suit in the USA against former CIA director George Tenet and the owners of the private jets, leased to the US government, that the CIA used to transport him.[16] El-Masri had to participate via a video link because the American authorities again confused him with al-Qaeda terrorist Khalid al-Masri and denied him entry when his plane landed in the United States. Some press reports attributed the Americans barring him entry due to his name remaining on the watch list. But his lawyer, Manfred Gnjidic, was also barred entry.
On December 17, 2005, Front magazine published an article that said a member of a German Intelligence Agency had clandestinely passed a copy of El-Masri’s dossier to the CIA in April 2004.[17]
El-Masri published a first-person account of his experience in the Los Angeles Times.[18]
On May 12, 2006, a U.S. federal court heard a government motion to dismiss the suit brought by El-Masri, claiming the trial could jeopardize national security.[24]
On May 18, 2006, U.S. Federal District Judge T.S. Ellis, III dismissed a lawsuit El-Masri filed against the CIA and three private companies allegedly involved with his transport, explaining that a public trial would “present a grave risk of injury to national security.”[25] (This legal doctrine is known as the state secrets privilege.[26]) Ellis also acknowledged that if Masri’s allegations were true then he deserved compensation from the US government.
The BND (German intelligence agency) declared on June 1, 2006 that it had known of El-Masri’s seizure 16 months before Germany was officially informed of his mistaken arrest. Germany had previously claimed that it did not know of El-Masri’s abduction until his return to the country in May 2004.[27]
On July 26, 2006, The ACLU announced that “it will appeal the recent dismissal of a lawsuit brought by Khaled El-Masri against the US government.”[28] According to ACLU attorney Ben Wizner, “If this decision stands, the government will have a blank check to shield even its most shameful conduct from accountability.”
On October 4, 2006 the Washington Post reported that Munich prosecutors were complaining that a lack of cooperation from US authorities was impeding their investigation into El-Masri’s abduction.[29] The article reports that Munich prosecutors have a list of the names, or known aliases, of 20 CIA operatives who they believe played a role in the abduction.
On January 31, 2007 Munich Prosecutor Christian Schmidt-Sommerfeld announced that warrants for 13 people were issued for suspected involvement in Mr El-Masri’s rendition.[30]
On February 6, 2007, U.S. officials warn the German Government not to issue international warrants.[31]
On February 21, 2007, the German Government decided to pass the warrants to Interpol.[32]
On March 2, 2007, the United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit affirmed the dismissal.[33]
On April 30, 2007, The Federal Constitutional Court of Germany ruled as unconstitutional the tapping of the phones of El-Masri’s lawyer by Munich’s DA office. The DA had requested the tapping claiming they expected the kidnappers to contact the lawyer “to find a solution to the case”.[34]
The real names of two of the pilots on the El-Masri rendition flight were revealed in June 2007, in the (German language) proceedings of netzwerk recherche (NR), a German association of investigative reporters, as Eric Robert Hume (alias Eric Matthew Fain), and James Kovalesky. For several months previously, both U.S. and German newspapers had been dropping heavy hints as to the pilots’ true identities.[35][36] In July 2007, SourceWatch identified the third pilot on the El-Masri flight as Harry Kirk Elarbee, on the basis of an automated search of the FAA airmen database and corroborating information previously published in the press.[37]
In June 2007 the ACLU filed a petition for certiorari at the U.S. Supreme Court.[38]
On July 12, 2007 the European Parliament issued the 2006 Progress Report on the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, in which the authorities of Macedonia were urged to cooperate in the investigation of the circumstances of the abduction.[39]
In September 2007, the German Government decided not to ask the US officially for extradition as an unofficial request had met a negative reply.[40]
On September 5, 2007, the Constitution Project filed an amicus curiae, a legal brief in support of his petition for certiorari.[41]
On October 9, 2007, the ACLU petition was denied by the U.S. Supreme Court without comment.[42][43]
On June 10, 2008, a new civil suit was launched by German and US civil rights lawyers representing Mr El- Masri seeking to force the German government to reconsider the extradition requests it issued in January 2007.[44]
In May 2009, Prosecutors attached to the Spanish National Court asked for an arrest order for thirteen CIA agents involved in the kidnapping.[45]
In May 2012, the European Court of Human Rights held a hearing on the case between El-Masri and the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia (application number 39630/09)) [46]

Forced disappearance:

In international human rights law, a forced disappearance (or enforced disappearance) occurs when a person is secretly abducted or imprisoned by a state or political organization or by a third party with the authorization, support, or acquiescence of a state or political organization, followed by a refusal to acknowledge the person’s fate and whereabouts, with the intent of placing the victim outside the protection of the law.[1]

According to the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court, which came into force on 1 July 2002, when committed as part of a widespread or systematic attack directed at any civilian population, a “forced disappearance” qualifies as a crime against humanity and, thus, is not subject to a statute of limitations. On 20 December 2006, the United Nations General Assembly adopted the International Convention for the Protection of All Persons from Enforced Disappearance.

Often forced disappearance implies murder. The victim in such a case is abducted, illegally detained and often tortured during interrogation; killed, and the body hidden. Typically, a murder will be surreptitious, with the corpse disposed of to escape discovery, so that the person apparently vanishes. The party committing the murder has deniability, as no body provides evidence of the victim’s death.

[…]

The ACLU has stated they consider extraordinary rendition to be an illegal form of forced disappearance and called for the detainees to receive trials and the camps to be closed; the US government argues that since the combatants are captured while participating in active military conflict against the United States and officially designated as unlawful combatants under the Geneva Convention, the detentions are legal under international law.[43]

[…]

In international human rights law, disappearances at the hands of the state have been codified as “enforced” or “forced disappearances” since the Vienna Declaration and Programme of Action. For example, the Rome Statute establishing the International Criminal Court defines enforced disappearance as a crime against humanity, and the practice is specifically addressed by the OAS’s Inter-American Convention on Forced Disappearance of Persons. There is also authority indicating that enforced disappearances occurring during armed conflict,[2] such as the Third Reich’s Night and Fog program, constitute war crimes.

The International Convention for the Protection of All Persons from Enforced Disappearance, adopted by the UN General Assembly on 20 December 2006, also states that the widespread or systematic practice of enforced disappearances constitutes a crime against humanity. It gives victims’ families the right to seek reparations, and to demand the truth about the disappearance of their loved ones. The Convention provides for the right not to be subjected to enforced disappearance, as well as the right for the relatives of the disappeared person to know the truth. The Convention contains several provisions concerning prevention, investigation and sanctioning of this crime, as well as the rights of victims and their relatives, and the wrongful removal of children born during their captivity. The Convention further sets forth the obligation of international co-operation, both in the suppression of the practice, and in dealing with humanitarian aspects related to the crime. The Convention establishes a Committee on Enforced Disappearances, which will be charged with important and innovative functions of monitoring and protection at international level. Currently, an international campaign of the International Coalition against Enforced Disappearances is working towards universal ratification of the Convention.

Disappearances work on two levels: not only do they silence opponents and critics who have disappeared, but they also create uncertainty and fear in the wider community, silencing others who would oppose and criticize. Disappearances entail the violation of many fundamentalhuman rights. For the disappeared person, these include the right to liberty, the right to personal security and humane treatment (including freedom from torture), the right to a fair trial, to legal counsel and to equal protection under the law, and the right of presumption of innocence among others. Their families, who often spend the rest of their lives searching for information on the disappeared, are also victims.

Source: Wikipedia

Gestapo

In English Gestapo simply means secret police.

The Gestapo (German pronunciation:[ɡeˈstaːpo, ɡəˈʃtaːpo] ( listen); abbreviation of Geheime Staatspolizei, “Secret State Police”) was the official secret police of Nazi Germany and German-occupied Europe.

[…]

“The basic Gestapo law passed by the government in 1936 gave the Gestapo carte blanche to operate without judicial oversight. The Gestapo was specifically exempted from responsibility to administrative courts, where citizens normally could sue the state to conform to laws.”

The power of the Gestapo most open to misuse was called Schutzhaft—”protective custody”, a euphemism for the power to imprison people without judicial proceedings. An oddity of the system was that the prisoner had to sign his own Schutzhaftbefehl, an order declaring that the person had requested imprisonment—presumably out of fear of personal harm (which, in a way, was true). In addition, thousands of political prisoners throughout Germany—and from 1941, throughout the occupied territories under the Night and Fog Decree—simply disappeared while in Gestapo custody.

Source: Wikipedia

How did the Gestapo rise to power? You can read the entry above but in a nutshell.

In Germany the branches of the police responsible for political and intelligences operations were detached from the tradition police service into two separate units. They were then merged a single unit known as the Gestapo. The Gestapo and all other agencies were then merge into a single bureaucracy, in the exact same manner that George Bush merged all agencies into the Department of Homeland Security.

The Gestapo was exempted from oversight answering only to the executive branch, with work being done in secret without judicial or legislative oversight. Further entrenching the Gestapo’s power courts ruled the agency immunity from lawsuits.

This is very similar to how the NSA, the CIA and at times the FBI and other federal agencies work – refusing to answer to congress and invoking national security to avoid being held accountable by the courts. Additionally, even when national security is not invoked courts have repeatedly ruled said agencies and the officers are immune from lawsuits.
Secret police

The Gestapo was nothing more than the Nazi secret police. Secret police exist in authoritarian regimes and operate in secret so they can work outside the law and commit crimes as they see fit.

Secret police (sometimes political police) are an intelligence agencies and or police agency, law enforcement office which operates in secrecy and also quite often beyond the law to protect the political power of an individual dictator or an authoritarian political regime.

Instead of transparently enforcing the rule of law and being subject to public scrutiny as ordinary police agencies do, secret police organizations are specifically intended to operate beyond and above the law in order to suppress political dissent through clandestine acts of terror and intimidation (such as kidnapping, coercive interrogation, torture, internal exile, forced disappearance, and assassination) targeted against political enemies of the ruling authority.

Secret police forces are accountable only to the executive branch of the government, sometimes only to a dictator. They operate entirely or partially in secrecy, that is, most or all of their operations are obscure and hidden from the general public and government except for the topmost executive officials. This semi-official capacity allows the secret police to bolster the government’s control over their citizens while also allowing the government to deny prior knowledge of any violations of civil liberties.

Secret police agencies have often been used as an instrument of political repression.

States where the secret police wield significant power are sometimes referred to as police states or counterintelligence states. In theory, secret police differ from the domestic security agencies in modern liberal democracies, because domestic security agencies are generally subject to government regulation, reporting requirements, and other accountability measures.

Despite such overview, there still exists the possibility of domestic-security agencies acting unlawfully and taking on some characteristics of secret police. In some cases, certain police agencies are accused of being secret police and deny being such. For example, political groups[1] and civil liberties organizations[2] in the United States have at various times accused the Federal Bureau of Investigation of being secret police. Which government agencies may be classed or characterized, in whole or part, as “secret police” is disputed by political scientists.
Control

A single secret service has the weapons to arrogate to itself complete political power. It may therefore pose a potential threat to the central political authority.

In dictatorships, a close relative of the dictator often heads the secret police. For example, Saddam Hussein, as head of the State Internal Security Department placed his secret police under the authority of his first cousin Ali Hassan al-Majid.

In addition, secret police has a strong tendency to view potential political enemies as concrete threats, even if they do not exist. In some cases, a dictator may manufacture such enemies for the purpose of directing national output toward a common goal, thereby supplying an image of national unity
Methods and history

Secret police not only have the traditional police authority to arrest and detain, but in some cases they are given unsupervised control of the length of detention, assigned to implement punishments independent of the public judiciary, and allowed to administer those punishments without external review. The tactics of investigation and intimidation used by secret police enable them to accrue so much power that they usually operate with little or no practical restraint.

Secret-police organizations employ internal spies and civilian informants to find protest leaders or dissidents, and they may also employ agents provocateurs to incite political opponents to perform illegal acts against the government, whereupon such opponents may be arrested. Secret police may open mail, tap telephone lines, use various techniques to trick, blackmail, or coerce relatives or friends of a suspect into providing information.

Secret police are notorious for raiding homes between midnight and dawn, to apprehend people suspected of dissent.[3]

People apprehended by the secret police are often arbitrarily arrested and detained without due process. While in detention, arrestees may be tortured or subjected to inhumane treatment. Suspects may not receive a public trial, and instead may be convicted in a kangaroo court-style show trial, or by a secret tribunal. Secret police known to have used these approaches in history include the secret police of East Germany (the Ministry for State Security or Stasi) and Portuguese PIDE.[4]

Secret police have been used by many types of governments. Secret police forces in dictatorships and totalitarian states usually use violence and acts of terror to suppress political opposition and dissent, and may use death squads to carry out assassinations and “disappearances“. In times of emergency or war, a democracy may lawfully grant its policing and security services additional or sweeping powers, which may be seen or construed as a secret police.

Source: Wikipedia

 


Afghanistan, the Taliban and the Bush Oil Team

 

SOURCE

According to Afghan, Iranian, and Turkish government sources, Hamid Karzai, the interim Prime Minister of Afghanistan, was a top adviser to the El Segundo, California-based UNOCAL Corporation which was negotiating with the Taliban to construct a Central Asia Gas (CentGas) pipeline from Turkmenistan through western Afghanistan to Pakistan.

Karzai, the leader of the southern Afghan Pashtun Durrani tribe, was a member of the mujaheddin that fought the Soviets during the 1980s. He was a top contact for the CIA and maintained close relations with CIA Director William Casey, Vice President George Bush, and their Pakistani Inter Service Intelligence (ISI) Service interlocutors. Later, Karzai and a number of his brothers moved to the United States under the auspices of the CIA. Karzai continued to serve the agency’s interests, as well as those of the Bush Family and their oil friends in negotiating the CentGas deal, according to Middle East and South Asian sources.

When one peers beyond all of the rhetoric of the White House and Pentagon concerning the Taliban, a clear pattern emerges showing that construction of the trans-Afghan pipeline was a top priority of the Bush administration from the outset. Although UNOCAL claims it abandoned the pipeline project in December 1998, the series of meetings held between U.S., Pakistani, and Taliban officials after 1998, indicates the project was never off the table.

Quite to the contrary, recent meetings between U.S. Ambassador to Pakistan Wendy Chamberlain and that country’s oil minister Usman Aminuddin indicate the pipeline project is international Project Number One for the Bush administration. Chamberlain, who maintains close ties to the Saudi ambassador to Pakistan (a one-time chief money conduit for the Taliban), has been pushing Pakistan to begin work on its Arabian Sea oil terminus for the pipeline.

Meanwhile, President Bush says that U.S. troops will remain in Afghanistan for the long haul. Far from being engaged in Afghan peacekeeping — the Europeans are doing much of that — our troops will effectively be guarding pipeline construction personnel that will soon be flooding into the country.

Karzai’s ties with UNOCAL and the Bush administration are the main reason why the CIA pushed him for Afghan leader over rival Abdul Haq, the assassinated former mujaheddin leader from Jalalabad, and the leadership of the Northern Alliance, seen by Langley as being too close to the Russians and Iranians. Haq had no apparent close ties to the U.S. oil industry and, as both a Pushtun and a northern Afghani, was popular with a wide cross-section of the Afghan people, including the Northern Alliance. Those credentials likely sealed his fate.

When Haq entered Afghanistan from Pakistan last October, his position was immediately known to Taliban forces, which subsequently pinned him and his small party down, captured, and executed them. Former Reagan National Security Adviser Robert McFarlane, who worked with Haq, vainly attempted to get the CIA to help rescue Haq. The agency claimed it sent a remotely-piloted armed drone to attack the Taliban but its actions were too little and too late. Some observers in Pakistan claim the CIA tipped off the ISI about Haq’s journey and the Pakistanis, in turn, informed the Taliban. McFarlane, who runs a K Street oil consulting firm, did not comment on further questions about the circumstances leading to the death of Haq.

While Haq was not part of the Bush administration’s GOP (Grand Oil Plan) for South Asia, Karzai was a key player on the Bush Oil team. During the late 1990s, Karzai worked with an Afghani-American, Zalmay Khalilzad, on the CentGas project. Khalilzad is President Bush’s Special National Security Assistant and recently named presidential Special Envoy for Afghanistan. Interestingly, in the White House press release naming Khalilzad special envoy, no mention was made of his past work for UNOCAL. Khalilzad has worked on Afghan issues under National Security Advisor Condoleezza Rice, a former member of the board of Chevron, itself no innocent bystander in the future CentGas deal. Rice made an impression on her old colleagues at Chevron. The company has named one of their supertankers the SS Condoleezza Rice.

Khalilzad, a fellow Pashtun and the son of a former government official under King Mohammed Zahir Shah, was, in addition to being a consultant to the RAND Corporation, a special liaison between UNOCAL and the Taliban government. Khalilzad also worked on various risk analyses for the project.

Khalilzad’s efforts complemented those of the Enron Corporation, a major political contributor to the Bush campaign. Enron, which recently filed for bankruptcy in the single biggest corporate collapse in the nation’s history, conducted the feasibility study for the CentGas deal. Vice President Cheney held several secret meetings with top Enron officials, including its Chairman Kenneth Lay, earlier in 2001. These meetings were presumably part of Cheney’s non-public Energy Task Force sessions. A number of Enron stockholders, including Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld and Trade Representative Robert Zoellick, became officials in the Bush administration. In addition, Thomas White, a former Vice Chairman of Enron and a multimillionaire in Enron stock, currently serves as the Secretary of the Army.

A chief benefactor in the CentGas deal would have been Halliburton, the huge oil pipeline construction firm that also had its eye on the Central Asian oil reserves. At the time, Halliburton was headed by Dick Cheney. After Cheney’s selection as Bush’s Vice Presidential candidate, Halliburton also pumped a huge amount of cash into the Bush-Cheney campaign coffers. And like oil cash cow Enron, there were Wall Street rumors in late December that Halliburton, which suffered a forty per cent drop in share value, might follow Enron into bankruptcy court.

Assisting with the CentGas negotiations with the Taliban was Laili Helms, the niece-in-law of former CIA Director Richard Helms. Laili Helms, also a relative of King Zahir Shah, was the Taliban’s unofficial envoy to the United States and arranged for various Taliban officials to visit the United States. Laili Helms’ base of operations was in her home in Jersey City on the Hudson River. Ironically, most of her work on behalf of the Taliban was practically conducted in the shadows of the World Trade Center, just across the river.

Laili Helms’ liaison work for the Taliban paid off for Big Oil. In December 1997, the Taliban visited UNOCAL’s Houston refinery operations. Interestingly, the chief Taliban leader based in Kandahar, Mullah Mohammed Omar, now on America’s international Most Wanted List, was firmly in the UNOCAL camp. His rival Taliban leader in Kabul, Mullah Mohammed Rabbani (not to be confused with the head of the Northern Alliance Burhanuddin Rabbani), favored Bridas, an Argentine oil company, for the pipeline project. But Mullah Omar knew UNOCAL had pumped large sums of money to the Taliban hierarchy in Kandahar and its expatriate Afghan supporters in the United States. Some of those supporters were also close to the Bush campaign and administration. And Kandahar was the city near which the CentGas pipeline was to pass, a lucrative deal for the otherwise desert outpost.

While Clinton’s State Department omitted Afghanistan from the top foreign policy priority list, the Bush administration, beholden to the oil interests that pumped millions of dollars into the 2000 campaign, restored Afghanistan to the top of the list, but for all the wrong reasons. After Bush’s accession to the presidency, various Taliban envoys were received at the State Department, CIA, and National Security Council. The CIA, which appears, more than ever, to be a virtual extended family of the Bush oil interests, facilitated a renewed approach to the Taliban. The CIA agent who helped set up the Afghan mujaheddin, Milt Bearden, continued to defend the interests of the Taliban. He bemoaned the fact that the United States never really bothered to understand the Taliban when he told the Washington Post last October, “We never heard what they were trying to say… We had no common language. Ours was, ‘Give up bin Laden.’ They were saying, ‘Do something to help us give him up.’ ”

There were even reports that the CIA met with their old mujaheddin operative bin Laden in the months before September 11 attacks. The French newspaper Le Figaro quoted an Arab specialist named Antoine Sfeir who postulated that the CIA met with bin Laden in July in a failed attempt to bring him back under its fold. Sfeir said the CIA maintained links with bin Laden before the U.S. attacked his terrorist training camps in Afghanistan in 1998 and, more astonishingly, kept them going even after the attacks. Sfeir told the paper, “Until the last minute, CIA agents hoped bin Laden would return to U.S. command, as was the case before 1998.” Bin Laden actually officially broke with the US in 1991 when US troops began arriving in Saudi Arabia during Operation Desert Storm. Bin Laden felt this was a violation of the Saudi regime’s responsibility to protect the Islamic Holy Shrines of Mecca and Medina from the infidels. Bin Laden’s anti-American and anti-House of Saud rhetoric soon reached a fever pitch.

The Clinton administration made numerous attempts to kill Bin Laden. In August 1998, Al Qaeda operatives blew up several U.S. embassies in Africa. In response, Bill Clinton ordered cruise missiles to be launched from US ships in the Persian Gulf into Afghanistan, which missed Bin Laden by a few hours. The Clinton administration also devised a plan with Pakistan’s ISI to send a team of assassins into Afghanistan to kill Bin Laden. But Pakistan’s government was overthrown by General Musharraf, who was viewed as particularly close to the Taliban. The CIA cancelled its plans, fearing Musharraf’s ISI would tip off the Taliban and Bin Laden. . The CIA’s connections to the ISI in the months before September 11 and the weeks after are also worthy of a full-blown investigation. The CIA continues to maintain an unhealthy alliance with the ISI, the organization that groomed bin Laden and the Taliban. Last September, the head of the ISI, General Mahmud Ahmed, was fired by Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf for his pro-Taliban leanings and reportedly after the U.S. government presented Musharraf with disturbing intelligence linking the general to the terrorist hijackers.

General Ahmed was in Washington, DC on the morning of September 11 meeting with CIA and State Department officials as the hijacked planes slammed into the World Trade Center and Pentagon. Later, both the Northern Alliance spokesman in Washington, Haron Amin, and Indian intelligence, in an apparent leak to The Times of India, confirmed that General Ahmed ordered a Pakistani-born British citizen and known terrorist named Ahmed Umar Sheik to wire $100,000 from Pakistan to the U.S. bank account of Mohammed Atta, the lead hijacker.

When the FBI traced calls made between General Ahmed and Sheik’s cellular phone – the number having been supplied by Indian intelligence to the FBI – a pattern linking the general with Sheik clearly emerged. According to The Times of India, the revelation that General Ahmed was involved in the Sheik-Atta money transfer was more than enough for a nervous and embarrassed Bush administration. It pressed Musharraf to dump General Ahmed. Musharraf mealy-mouthed the announcement of his general’s dismissal by stating Ahmed “requested” early retirement.

Sheik was well known to the Indian police. He was arrested in New Delhi in 1994 for plotting to kidnap four foreigners, including an American citizen. Sheik was released by the Indians in 1999 in a swap for passengers on board New Delhi-bound Indian Airlines flight 814, hijacked by Islamic militants from Kathmandu, Nepal to Kandahar, Afghanistan. India continues to believe the ISI played a part in the hijacking since the hijackers were affiliated with the pro-bin Laden Kashmiri terrorist group, Harkat-ul-Mujaheddin, a group only recently and quite belatedly placed on the State Department’s terrorist list. The ISI and bin Laden’s Al Qaeda reportedly assists the group in its operations against Indian government targets in Kashmir.

The FBI, which assisted its Indian counterpart in the investigation of the Indian Airlines hijacking, says it wants information leading to the arrest of those involved in the terrorist attacks. Yet, no move has been made to question General Ahmed or those U.S. government officials, including Deputy Secretary of State Richard Armitage, who met with him in September. Clearly, General Ahmed was a major player in terrorist activities across South Asia, yet still had very close ties to the U.S. government. General Ahmed’s terrorist-supporting activities – and the U.S. government officials who tolerated those activities – need to be investigated.

The Taliban visits to Washington continued up to a few months prior to the September 11 attacks. The State Department’s Bureau of Intelligence and Research’s South Asian Division maintained constant satellite telephone contact with the Taliban in Kandahar and Kabul. Washington permitted the Taliban to maintain a diplomatic office in Queens, New York headed by Taliban diplomat Abdul Hakim Mojahed. In addition, U.S. officials, including Assistant Secretary of State for South Asian Affairs Christina Rocca, who is also a former CIA officer, visited Taliban diplomatic officials in Islamabad. In the meantime, the Bush administration took a hostile attitude towards the Islamic State of Afghanistan, otherwise known as the Northern Alliance. Even though the United Nations recognized the alliance as the legitimate government of Afghanistan, the Bush administration, with oil at the forefront of its goals, decided to follow the lead of Saudi Arabia and Pakistan and curry favor with the Taliban mullahs of Afghanistan. The visits of Islamist radicals did not end with the Taliban. In July 2001, the head of Pakistan’s pro-bin Laden Jamiaat-i-Islami Party, Qazi Hussein Ahmed, also reportedly was received at the George Bush Center for Intelligence (aka, CIA headquarters) in Langley, Virginia.

According to the Washington Post, the Special Envoy of Mullah Omar, Rahmatullah Hashami, even came to Washington bearing a gift carpet for President Bush from the one-eyed Taliban leader. The Village Voice reported that Hashami, on behalf of the Taliban, offered the Bush administration to hold on to bin Laden long enough for the United States to capture or kill him but, inexplicably, the administration refused. Meanwhile, Spozhmai Maiwandi, the director of the Voice of America’s Pashtun service, jokingly nicknamed “Kandahar Rose” by her colleagues, aired favorable reports on the Taliban, including a controversial interview with Mullah Omar.

The Bush administration’s dalliances with the Taliban may have even continued after the start of the bombing campaign against their country. According to European intelligence sources, a number of European governments were concerned that the CIA and Big Oil were pressuring the Bush administration not to engage in an initial serious ground war on behalf of the Northern Alliance in order to placate Pakistan and its Taliban compatriots. The early-on decision to stick with an incessant air bombardment, they reasoned, was causing too many civilian deaths and increasing the shakiness of the international coalition.

The obvious, and woefully underreported, interfaces between the Bush administration, UNOCAL, the CIA, the Taliban, Enron, Saudi Arabia, and Pakistan, the groundwork for which was laid when the Bush Oil team was on the sidelines during the Clinton administration, is making the Republicans worried. Vanquished vice presidential candidate Joseph Lieberman is in the ironic position of being the senator who will chair the Senate Government Affairs Committee hearings on the collapse of Enron. The roads from Enron also lead to Afghanistan and murky Bush oil politics.

UNOCAL was also clearly concerned about its past ties to the Taliban. On September 14, just three days after terrorists of the Afghan-base al Qaeda movement crashed their planes into the World Trade Center and Pentagon, UNOCAL issued the following statement: “The company is not supporting the Taliban in Afghanistan in any way whatsoever. Nor do we have any project or involvement in Afghanistan. Beginning in late 1997, Unocal was a member of a multinational consortium that was evaluating construction of a Central Asia Gas pipeline between Turkmenistan and Pakistan [via western Afghanistan]. Our company has had no further role in developing or funding that project or any other project that might involve the Taliban.”

The Bush Oil Team, which can now rely on the support of the interim Prime Minister of Afghanistan, may think that war and oil profits mix. But there is simply too much evidence that the War in Afghanistan was primarily about building UNOCAL’s pipeline, not about fighting terrorism. The Democrats, who control the Senate and its investigation agenda, should investigate the secretive deals between Big Oil, Bush, and the Taliban.

 


Congressional Probe Reveals Cover-Up of "Auschwitz-Like" Conditions at U.S.-Funded Afghan Hospital

A congressional investigation has revealed a top U.S. general in Afghanistan sought to stall an investigation into abuse at a U.S.-funded hospital in Kabul that kept patients in “Auschwitz-like” conditions. Army whistleblowers revealed photographs taken in 2010, which show severely neglected, starving patients at Dawood Hospital, considered the crown jewel of the Afghan medical system where the country’s military personnel are treated. The photos show severely emaciated patients, some suffering from gangrene and maggot-infested wounds. The general accused of the cover-up is Lt. Gen. William Caldwell, one of the nation’s highest-ranking commanders in Afghanistan, who served as the commander of the $11.2-billion-a-year Afghan training program. We speak to Michael Hastings, contributing editor at Rolling Stone magazine and a reporter for BuzzFeed, which has been following the story closely.
Transcript

NERMEEN SHAIKH: A congressional investigation has revealed a top U.S. general in Afghanistan sought to stall an investigation into abuse at a U.S.-funded hospital in Kabul that kept patients in, quote, “Auschwitz-like” conditions. Army whistleblowers revealed photographs taken in 2010 which show severely neglected, starving patients at Dawood Hospital, considered the crown jewel of the Afghan medical system, where the country’s military personnel are treated. The photos show severely emaciated patients, some suffering from gangrene and maggot-infested wounds. For TV viewers of Democracy Now!, please be warned: these images are extremely graphic and may be disturbing.

The general accused of the cover-up is William Caldwell, one of the nation’s highest-ranking commanders in Afghanistan, who served as the commander of the $11.2-billion-a-year Afghan training program. Testifying before a subcommittee of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee last week, one of the whistleblowers, Colonel Mark Fassl, the former inspector general for the NATO training mission in Afghanistan, explained General Caldwell’s response to the initial call for an inquiry into what was happening at the hospital in Kabul.

COL. MARK FASSL: His first response to me was, “How could we do this or make this request, with elections coming?” And then he made the really, again, shocking comment that he calls me Bill.

REP. JASON CHAFFETZ: But what does that mean?

COL. MARK FASSL: Well, I took it as that he was referring to the president of the United States.

REP. JASON CHAFFETZ: And that he had a personal relationship?

COL. MARK FASSL: I don’t know, Chairman, if he had a personal relationship, but the political pressure there was such that he made those statements.

NERMEEN SHAIKH: According to the Oversight Committee, the United States has spent over $180 million on operating medical sites in Afghanistan, most of which is believed to have gone to Dawood Hospital, where NATO personnel oversee Afghan medical staff. Colonel Mark Fassl also gave testimony describing the conditions he witnessed at Dawood Hospital.

COL. MARK FASSL: As we further went into the hospital, we found that not only was there no heat going into the winter, but there was a lack of hygiene, soap—just, again, basic things that you would expect a 250-bed hospital—of course, it was a 500-bed hospital, but it was mainly being used as 250 beds—but, again, the lack of hygiene and soap. And then, Ranking Member Tierney read a very good description of what I saw with the open vats of blood draining out of soldiers’ wounds, the feces on the floor. The other thing that caught my attention was there were many family members taking care of their loved ones, not hospital staff.

AMY GOODMAN: The website BuzzFeed, which first published several of the Dawood Hospital photos last week, revealed Tuesday the Pentagon has withheld key documents relating to abuses at the hospital.

To talk more about the cover-up, we’re joined by Michael Hastings, contributing editor at Rolling Stone, reporter for BuzzFeed, which has been following the story closely. His book, The Operators: The Wild and Terrifying Inside Story of America’s War in Afghanistan, was published earlier this year.

Welcome back to Democracy Now!, Michael.

MICHAEL HASTINGS: Thanks for having me.

AMY GOODMAN: Tell us what’s happened at the hospital, how you found out about it, and then about the cover-up.

MICHAEL HASTINGS: Sure. This was a hospital that was started in 2005 in Kabul and funded almost completely by the United States. And about a year ago, the Wall Street Journal did an original story about how a lot of these patients who were at—these Afghan patients at the hospital were dying, essentially, from starvation, from simple infections that should be treated very easily but instead they were—actually became mortal wounds. There were allegations that, to get treatment, you had to bribe the hospital officials. And so, there were a number of Americans who were advisers there who thought this was horrible, took a lot of these pictures, brought them to the command, this General Caldwell, and General Caldwell said, “I don’t want any of this bad news getting out of here. I don’t want an investigation. Let’s just, you know, try to sweep this under the rug.” Thankfully, the whistleblowers continued—kind of ignored that, essentially, and went ahead, and that’s how we know about this, because of this congressional investigation into it.

AMY GOODMAN: But this has been going on now for years. And talk about just who William Caldwell is and now what is being done about this. It opened in 2005, as you said.

MICHAEL HASTINGS: Right, right. So we know—we know for a fact, and he have it very well documented now, that from period of 2010 to 2011 these abuses were certainly going on. From anecdotal evidence, from people we’ve spoken to, we think that this was happening before that, as well.

General Caldwell is—was the head of the $11.2-billion-a-year Afghan training mission. At one time, he was the spokesperson for the U.S. in Iraq. In fact, I spent many a day next to General Caldwell in the Green Zone, while he would sit next to me and tell us how great things were going in Baghdad. And this was in 2006, 2007, when things were really, really going horribly.

Now, one of General Caldwell’s things is he’s obsessed with the idea of messaging. He’s obsessed with public affairs. One of the things he’s wanted to do is tear down the traditional wall between public affairs and information operations—which public affairs are for the Americans, information operations are for the enemy—and combine it into one sort of global strategic communication strategy. So, when he was presented with these allegations, these abuses, these photos, this testimony, his response was, “Well, how do we message this? You know, this is not the kind of news we want to get out of here.”

And now General Caldwell is the head of U.S. Army North, so he’s back in the United States. And he’s in charge of—in case there’s a catastrophe or martial law or whatever, he would be the guy who would be in charge from the Army side of things.

NERMEEN SHAIKH: Well, Michael Hastings, the spokesman, in fact, for the place where he is now, in Fort Sam Houston, in response to the inquiry, has said, “I am sure that Lt. Gen. Caldwell would welcome the opportunity to respond to any inquiry, and I’m confident that once the facts are presented and examined, all allegations will be proven to be false.”

MICHAEL HASTINGS: Right. That’s Colonel Wayne Shanks, I believe—

NERMEEN SHAIKH: That’s right.

MICHAEL HASTINGS: —who we’re quoting.

NERMEEN SHAIKH: That’s right.

MICHAEL HASTINGS: And Wayne Shanks is one of those particular kind of—I’m trying to use a word that’s not “moron” — within the sort of military establishment, who essentially is an attack dog. He has a history of saying things that are just not true. And, you know, I think it will be interesting to see what General Caldwell’s side of the story is. What we know right now, we have three U.S. Army colonels, three military colonels, who have testified that General Caldwell decided not to—did not want to investigate because of political pressure and because, as we were talking about, this idea of bad news. Now, he will—what’s going to happen, I think, if and when General Caldwell does testify, he will come out with a story that says, “Look, I actually wanted to investigate this. Here are some emails I sent a couple days—here are some emails I sent saying this.” Now, but the funny thing is it’s going to show that the investigation already started and then, to sort of cover his flank, he sent these emails out.

NERMEEN SHAIKH: Is he likely to be called to testify?

MICHAEL HASTINGS: We haven’t been able to confirm that, but I would think that’s now a likely possibility.

AMY GOODMAN: Are there Americans at Dawood Hospital now?

MICHAEL HASTINGS: Yes, yes. And the Pentagon—just yesterday, the Pentagon told us that things had much improved there. I haven’t been there myself, so I can’t actually confirm that. But throughout this entire time, there were about 20 to 25 different American advisers who would be at the hospital on a regular basis.

AMY GOODMAN: During last week’s hearing, Democratic Congressmember John Tierney asked retired Air Force Colonel Schuyler Geller about who saw the conditions in the hospital before those who decided to blow the whistle.

REP. JOHN TIERNEY: All the years we’ve been in Afghanistan before you arrived, how many people went through that hospital and saw those conditions and said nothing?

COL. SCHUYLER GELLER: Scores of mentors and scores of general officers.

AMY GOODMAN: Michael Hastings, your response?

MICHAEL HASTINGS: Yeah, it’s sad. I mean, it’s tragic. We have, like we said, $180 million going to this hospital system right in Kabul. It’s the sort of jewel—it was one of the stops along the parade of when, you know, congressmen or generals would come in and tour the country. This is the hospital we’d show off to them. And it turns out that what was going on here are the sort of abuses that—I have never seen this kind of abuse, these sort of horrific pictures, in my time covering these wars. There’s something particularly, I think, upsetting about these, because they—it just didn’t have to happen. You know, the fact that you have Afghan patients, Afghan soldiers who have been wounded, and they can’t even get food? That we’re supplying gasoline, but the gasoline is being sold, so the generators don’t work, so they’re living in—through these, you know, sub—not sub-zero, but very, very cold temperatures? You go down the list. Selling drugs? Patients having surgery on them without anesthesia, though we had provided anesthesia? And so, I think it is quite disturbing that all these people could go through there and either not see it or have it hidden, be hidden from them.

NERMEEN SHAIKH: You’ve said that the conditions there, from what you’ve seen of the pictures—have you seen all 70 of the pictures?

MICHAEL HASTINGS: No, there are 70—there are 70 pictures. We’ve seen—we’ve published 11 new pictures last week that hadn’t been out there, but there’s a lot more to come.

NERMEEN SHAIKH: And you’ve said that conditions there are so horrific, on the basis of what you’ve seen, that in fact Dawood Hospital is Afghanistan’s Abu Ghraib.

MICHAEL HASTINGS: I think one can make a convincing case to say that, because, again, you have a situation where, you know, the native population, under our supervision, has been treated particularly horribly. Obviously, in Abu Ghraib, you had pictures where you had Americans in the frame doing sort of ridiculous things. But there’s—but when people really start to think about what the conditions were like for these patients, right, that they—no real medical supervision. Families were coming in, roaming the halls at all hours. If you wanted surgery, you had to pay a certain price. You know, you had medical instruments sort of left within wounds. You had—I mean, this is disgusting stuff—I know it’s early in the morning—but maggots crawling out of bandages. Stuff that, you know, just totally unacceptable. And we’re spending $11.2 billion, and we can’t manage the one, you know, high-profile hospital in the city. And it’s just—it’s pretty upsetting.

NERMEEN SHAIKH: Does the U.S. fund other hospitals in Afghanistan, as well?

MICHAEL HASTINGS: They do. They do. And who knows what’s going on there? I mean, I don’t want to cast aspersions, but I think we know—and as, you know, you mentioned the other report about all the—how much money will be thrown away over there, that one would assume that these sorts of things are also going on.

AMY GOODMAN: I want to turn to other news regarding your reporting.

MICHAEL HASTINGS: Sure.

AMY GOODMAN: According to documents obtained by Truthout under the Freedom of Information Act, senior officials at the Department of Homeland Security tried to have you remove a report you published on the Rolling Stone magazine website in February about the agency’s role in monitoring Occupy Wall Street. In an email message on the day your piece was published, Caitlin Durkovich, chief of staff in DHS’s National Protection and Programs Directorate, wrote, quote, “I think we should consider calling Hastings and help him understand our mission,” she said.

The next day, after other news outlets had picked up your story, Durkovich wrote again to say, “I think we need to pick up the phone, and call Hastings. National security is his beat, but he can be provocative so we need to have a clear sey [sic] of tps,” you know, talking points. “Let’s explain our mission, to include what FPS’s” — the federal protective service’s — “role has been in OWS. And push back on the inaccuracies.”

Explain what took place. Did they call you?

MICHAEL HASTINGS: Well, I just found out about this yesterday. I would have answered—

AMY GOODMAN: I guess they didn’t call.

MICHAEL HASTINGS: They did not call. I would have answered the call. I would have been happy to actually talk to them about this report, because it was quite a—what I published online was a internal Department of Homeland Security document that revealed that they had been paying very close attention to Occupy Wall Street, monitoring it, monitoring social media, and kind of just explaining what Occupy Wall Street was. So it was a fairly benign report in a lot of ways, though it raised some questions about why is Department of Homeland Security, you know, analyzing Occupy Wall Street? Now, it turns out, also in these emails, it says that DHS want to say, “Look, we shouldn’t have even done this report.” So they actually wanted to—they sort of agreed with me, while at the same time there was about, I guess, a hundred pages of emails deciding how they should respond to the Occupy—to our report in Rolling Stone about it.

AMY GOODMAN: But explain further what this report is and where you got the information that you got.

MICHAEL HASTINGS: Well, so, this came from the WikiLeaks Stratfor files dump. I don’t know if you remember that the hacking group Anonymous hacked into this private intelligence firm, Stratfor, and Assange and the crew gave me access to this stuff. This was in February. And I went through—and I went looking through this. And one of the people in Stratfor had access to this Department of Homeland Security document. So we know Stratfor was getting leaks from the Department of Homeland Security. One of them was this Occupy Wall Street analysis or report on Occupy Wall Street. I thought it was very odd to have a Department of Homeland Security report about a peaceful protest movement. That raised just normal alarm bells. And so—so that’s why we did the report.

But it was all for—but it was actually a credit to the WikiLeaks guys who put this stuff out there. I always find it—I guess, as a journalist, one is supposed to be probably somewhat flattered by the—how—you know, as my editor at Rolling Stone put it yesterday, when the government is trying to pad your file. And I think that that was certainly the case here. They also brought their concerns to the White House when they were trying to come up with a statement. But clearly, allegations that the Department of Homeland Security, that was spying or monitoring Occupy Wall Street really hit a nerve within—in Washington.

AMY GOODMAN: They say the Stratfor document wasn’t true.

MICHAEL HASTINGS: Well, I think that it was authentic. And as far as I can tell, they’re not disputing the authenticity.

AMY GOODMAN: Yes.

MICHAEL HASTINGS: What they’re disputing, as far as I can tell, is that they shouldn’t have—they shouldn’t have done it, that DHS themselves shouldn’t have done it. But they didn’t under—they couldn’t figure out how Stratfor even got the document to begin with.

NERMEEN SHAIKH: Well, before we conclude, Michael Hastings, I just wanted to ask you quickly about the three military personnel, two of whom are retired, of course, who have talked about what’s happened at Dawood Hospital, whether they’re likely to face any punitive consequences as whistleblowers?

MICHAEL HASTINGS: Well, I don’t think so, at this stage. You know, they’re colonels. Their careers, they’ve had—most of them had pretty long, storied careers already. One is a JAG lawyer anyway. So, in this case, they seem very well protected from the sort of retaliation that we’ve seen in the past. But, you know, look, it’s not easy when you’re in the Army or in the military to go in front of Congress and say, “Look, a four-star—sorry, a three-star general is lying,” you know, because there’s a lot of pressure for them not to do that. So it’s quite impressive that they have. And there are current—I should point out, there are currently two ongoing investigations into General Caldwell about his retaliation against the whistleblowers and trying to get in the way of the investigation.

NERMEEN SHAIKH: That’s the Military Whistleblower Protection Act that you spoke of.

MICHAEL HASTINGS: Yeah, exactly.

AMY GOODMAN: I want to thank you very much, Michael Hastings, for joining us. We will link to the reports and the photos online at democracynow.org. Michael Hastings, contributing editor at Rolling Stone magazine, reporter for BuzzFeed, which published several of the photographs of the Dawood Hospital never seen before. Michael’s book, The Operators: The Wild and Terrifying Inside Story of America’s War in Afghanistan, was published last year.

democracynow.org


The US Dow Chemical company’s sponsorship of the Olympic Games

“But I don’t want to go among mad people,” Alice remarked

“Oh, you can’t help that”, said the Cat: We’re all mad here. I’m mad, you’re mad.

“How do you know I’m mad?” Said Alice.

“You must be”, said the Cat, “or you wouldn’t have come here.”

(“Alice in Wonderland”, Lewis Carroll, 1832-1898.)

When London scraped past Paris to win the 2012 Olympics by four votes on 6th July 2005, on the day preceding the 7/7 London bomb attacks, triumphalism of the “Rule Britannia” genre was rampant – and for many cringe-inducing and concerning in the extreme. The UK had joined the US in the invasions and near destruction of swathes of Afghanistan and Iraq. Award of this great international event surely sat badly with a large world view of Britain.

The then Prime Minister, Tony Blair – whose offices provided the historically misleading document about Iraq’s “weapons of mass destruction” sealing the decision to invade – was integral to the Olympic bid. Sir Steve Redgrave, one of the Bid Team in Singapore commented at the time: “ … if you have to pin it down on one person it’s Tony Blair coming out here …”

The triumphalism was short lived. Fifteen hours after the announcement, explosive devices on London’s transport system during the morning rush hour,placed on trains and a bus, killed fifty two people and injured seven hundred and seventy.

The Olympic opening ceremony is on 27th July, the anniversary of the Centennial Park bombing of the Atlanta Olympics (27th July 1996) killing two and injuring one hundred and eleven.

Britain’s Ministry of Defence surely do not believe in omens, but nevertheless reality now is a world away from the UK’s Award commitment that: “The 2012 Olympiad stands under the motto ‘Green and Secure.’ “

The US Dow Chemical company’s “worldwide partner” status – the highest level sponsorship of the Olympic Games for “a decade of positive association” with the “Olympic brand” at a price tag to Dow of $100 million arguably hardly presents either a “green” or “secure” image.

Dow is parent company to Union Carbide, responsible for India’s December 1984 Bhopal disaster, the world’s worst chemical accident, resulting in at least eleven thousand deaths. A 2006 Indian government affidavit pertaining to still ongoing legal actions stated the leak caused a staggering 558,125 injuries.

Campaigners, survivors and the Indian government have protested Dow’s sponsorship. It seems still uncertain whether the Indian team will take part in or boycott the Olympics. (i)

On 30th April it became clear that Londoners could factor in potential chemical, biological or missile attack. “Exercise Olympic Guardian” was announced – the UK had, of course, now enjoined the US again in threatening another two countries, Syria and Iran. London too has become a war zone.

“We are fighting them over there so we don’t have to fight them over here” has been the US and UK political mantra of their illegal invasions,. Ironically Olympic London’s mobilization is now being compared by politicians to the World War 11 Blitz – when the area most devastated by Germany’s bombs were East London – the main Olympic venue.

General Sir Nick Parker, in command of the totalitarian terrorization of Londoners and residents around other Olympic venues explained: “It’s an air threat (of two kinds) the sort of 9/11 threat … and also the lower, slower type of (missile) which might pop up closer to the Olympic Park, which we would need to intervene.”

Thus, in this most densely populated area, batteries of surface-to-air Rapier missiles (which launch at up to three times the speed of sound) have been sited on two residential blocks of flats within bombing range of the stadium. The “formidable” Rapier with warhead: “to guarantee a kill”, cited by its developers as a “hit-ile” rather than a missile, is being deployed at six London sites in all (so far.)

Parker’s concern is to protect Olympic venues from “… very serious threat.” Should planes or missiles crash on residents, their lives and homes are clearly a price worth paying. “Drones will patrol the skies over the Olympic park, barricaded behind an eleven-mile electrified fence and guarded with sonic weapons and fifty five teams of attack dogs.” (Guardian, 11th July 2012.)

Sonic weapons can shatter windows and ear drums up to three kilometers away – of parents, children, people simply pottering around in their homes.

Typhoon jets and helicopters with snipers are based minutes hit time away at West London’s RAF Northolt (first such deployment since World War 11) RAF Puma helicopters in East London with “side firing machine guns” are included in a “sad history” of British military aircraft crashes, according to the military savvy Daily Telegraph (3rd July 2012.)

Warships with Royal Navy Lynx helicopters: “now with increased firepower” based on board, are on the Thames and at the rowing venues at Weymouth Bay and Portland Harbour. General Parker’s contingency plans, however, have not accounted for nature’s near biblical deluges currently submerging cars in Weymouth’s Olympic “Park and Ride” facility.

Portland, which overlooks the rowing contests has been walled in reminiscent of US erected walls in Baghdad, to prevent massively inconvenienced residents’ availing of small compensation in watching contests free.

Soldiers patrol the streets, about 13,500 being deployed, more than deployed in Afghanistan – twelve thousand police, twenty thousand varying other security personnel with at least a thousand American police and military personnel, may be more, figures change.

But in spite of all, perhaps the most alarming material has come from an undercover reporter (ii) experienced in such work, employed as a security guard with G4S the main contractors for Olympic protection. His truly terrifying recounting includes a plan to evacuate the whole of London (eleven million people) and the importation of two hundred thousand (body) caskets, each being able to hold four or five people.

So if you plan to visit the Olympics (traveling from abroad up to five hours wait to pass immigration at Heathrow Airport; part of motorway to London currently collapsed, but there is always the underground transport system) enjoy your stay.

Update: as this is finished a further three thousand five hundreds troops, many” “just back from Afghanistan” have been drafted into the main Stadium area. Let’s hope they remember where they are.

Weather forecast: “Cold, wet, windy.”

Notes

i. http://www.brisbanetimes.com.au/olympics/news-london-2012/bhopal-backlash-gathers-pace-20120712-21yst.html#ixzz20UYnwkre

ii. http://libertarianreview.us/2012/06/28/london-olympics-wide-open-to-terror-attacks-undercover-reporter-and-employees-expose-security/

iii. http://insomniacanonymous.wordpress.com/2012/06/22/the-great-olympic-greenwash-people-power-al-jazeera-english/

iv. http://insomniacanonymous.wordpress.com/2012/07/10/dows-pesticide-dursban-was-banned-for-home-use-but-continues-to-be-sprayed-on-our-food-despite-horrific-health-threats/

source


Iranian First Vice-President Rahimi's Comments on Drugs

Iranian First Vice-President Rahimi’s Anti-Semitic Comments at the International Day Against Abuse Conference in Tehran

Press Statement
Victoria Nuland
Department Spokesperson, Office of the Spokesperson
Washington, DC
July 3, 2012

We strongly condemn Iranian First Vice-President Mohammad Reza Rahimi’s vile anti-Semitic and racist comments on June 26 at the International Day Against Drug Abuse conference in Tehran. The United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) has confirmed that the conference was not held under UN auspices, nor did officials in attendance have any idea that Rahimi would level such offensive charges. Both UN Secretary-General Ban-Ki Moon and UNODC Executive Director Yury Fedotov registered their dismay and serious concern over Rahimi’s anti-Semitic speech and issued a statement July 3 calling on Iranian officials to refrain from these kinds of anti-Semitic statements.

The United States supports meetings that address the very real crisis of drug abuse and drug trafficking around the world. We trust that parties interested in combating the scourge of drug abuse and drug trafficking will focus their efforts on legitimate international meetings, and will join us in condemning such attempts to take advantage of them to promote hateful, racist speech.

http://www.al-monitor.com/pulse/originals/2012/al-monitor/in-iran-anti-semitic-outbursts-r.html

Which links to this Persian account, translated by Google (better translation welcome)

http://www.aftabir.com/news/view/2012/jun/26/c1_1340705604.php/

Tuesday, Jun 26, 2012 – 02:43:24

The Iranian Students News Agency (ISNA).

Mohammad Reza Rahimi said at the celebration of the global fight against drugs: the development of drugs and glass are rooted in the Talmudic teachings of Zionists.

Rahimi asserted: The Talmud teaches against Christianity and also against Muslims. Judaism considers itself to be served by others.

He continued: what happened in Russia as well as labor unrest resulted from the actions of all the Jews and their leaders, but later research showed that among the Jews not one of them was killed.

First Vice President stated: Wherever there Muslim blood is spilled Yahoods [Jews?] are behind it.

They destroy not only with drugs but also with cultural biases, biases issues they promote to their children, their parents realize that no boy and girl can resist. Rahimi said: Jews dominate the media world’s thinking and work to increase their cultural wealth and resources from plundered countries.

Rahimi said that when Iranian forces entered Afghanistan they found opium cultivation has increased by 60%, otherwise Iran would buy all the drug produced in Afghanistan and convert it into morphine and medical use. We can also reveal that money could taken the Afghan narcotics transit route to Europe and to open the way to earn income for our country, but this is contrary to morality, and contrary to our education.

He pointed out: 13% of opium addicts are in Europe and elsewhere they are common as wine. Despite that we have respect for the followers of Moses, but we are opposed to the Zionists. Zionists are promoting and developing drugs, but they avoid addiction to them.

The First Vice President said: 210 million people worldwide are suffering drug addiction and 27 million people in Asian countries. Rahimi said: According to the rules and regulations of the Iranian leader drug deaths will be publicized. Our question to you based on our few deaths because we do not promote drugs, then what is the fuss.

Rahimi said the spread of drugs in Asian countries and in Africa has not occurred because there is no money to buy drugs.

He also pointed out: 10 percent of Americans are addicted to drugs, but the story behind all these are Shyvnyyst [?]. First Vice President also stated that three million immigrants a year from Afghanistan have been imposed on our country and said on Iran is the greatest nation of immigrants. Our unemployment numbers in the country approches zero because of the low number of unemployed in our country.

Elsewhere in his remarks he noted America’s claims about certain events based on satellite images of prison camps, so he said why not see all fields of opium in Afghanistan? Kvryd?[?]

He said threats to Iran’s independence and freedom is everywhere seen as manifestations of global arrogance and Zionism is the source. Why should Iran give Chharhzar [?] martyr for the anti-drug but not the blood from the nose, decide on one of them.

First vice president said, the Secretary General Staff Drug Head accused importation of opium from Iran but did not go to the Prayer Wall for industrial materials. Who organized importation of this material. Who is behind this.

Rahimi said: Senator, America has sold us poisoned cigarettes to bring down the people and our schools have to say that these are a threat.

He emphasized that the Zionists are behind all the adventures of the drug, said Iran is willing to pay this price for all countries in the world to know that Zionism is the main drug. He said the Iranian people are standing firm and are content with the severe sanctions.

Report: ISNA (www.isna.ir)


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