Tag Archives: Barack Obama

I voted for a drone killer for you to be happy

 

Not a recently released YouTube big score video. It does not predict any planet alignement for tomorrow the 21st. The 21 st was meant to be a cultural shift not an earthenly destruction. Yet some in the Bollywood profited from the people’s fear of the unknown.Shame on them. They made this chinese girl go into shock and stab ppl..So what do you really think of 2012 the tomorrow ?? the 21 st of december? the equinox? The everything and its theories?

Will tell you what to think: instead of building shelters and buying candles for the 3-days BS darkness you should be all be aware of the REAL darkness surrounding you and thats your and mine and everyone’s governments.So yes this is my top video. If it were yours too,this world would have been a better place

Never forget that whenever you throw the ballot in the darn slot you are voting for my future as well My kids future,your kids and everyones kids. Because I never wanted Obama to be re-elected nor i believed in Romney and all that  PR BS but you did

 

If tomorrow you were to die ,what would you say to your kids? That I voted for a drone killer for you to be happy??

 

My kindest regards and a happy new “fear”

 

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Barack Obama,the Killer Companies and the Temple of Doom

 

By Amy Goodman with Denis Moynihan [source]

If a volcano kills civilians in Indonesia, it’s news. When the government does the killing, sadly, it’s just business as usual, especially if an American president tacitly endorses the killing, as President Barack Obama just did with his visit to Indonesia.

As the people around Mount Merapi dig out of the ash following a series of eruptions that have left more than 150 dead, a darker cloud now hangs over Indonesia in the form of renewed U.S. support for the country’s notorious Kopassus, the military’s special forces commando group. Journalist Allan Nairn released several secret Kopassus documents as the Obamas landed in Jakarta, showing the level of violent political repression administered by the Kopassus—now, for the first time in more than a decade, with United States support.

Last March, Nairn revealed details of a Kopassus assassination program in the Indonesian province of Aceh. These new Kopassus documents shed remarkable detail on the province of West Papua. As Nairn wrote in his piece accompanying the documents, West Papua is “where tens of thousands of civilians have been murdered and where Kopassus is most active. … When the U.S. restored Kopassus aid last July the rationale was fighting terrorism, but the documents show that Kopassus in fact systematically targets civilians.” In the Kopassus’ own words, the civilians are “much more dangerous than any armed opposition.”

One document names 15 leaders of the Papuan civil society, all “civilians, starting with the head of the Baptist Synod of Papua. The others include evangelical ministers, activists, traditional leaders, legislators, students and intellectuals as well as local establishment figures and the head of the Papua Muslim Youth organization.”

President Obama lived in Indonesia from the ages of 6 through 10, after his mother married an Indonesian man. Obama said in Jakarta this week: “[M]uch has been made of the fact that this marks my return to where I lived as a young boy. … But today, as president, I’m here to focus not on the past, but on the future—the Comprehensive Partnership that we’re building between the United States and Indonesia.” Part of that relationship involves the renewed support of Kopassus, which has been denied since the armed forces burned then-Indonesian-occupied East Timor to the ground in 1999, killing more than 1,400 Timorese.

A series of cell-phone videos have come out of Papua showing torture being inflicted on men there at the hands of what appear to be members of the military. In one video that surfaced just two weeks ago, soldiers burn a man’s genitals with a burning stick, cover his head with a plastic bag to suffocate him, and threaten him with a rifle. Another video shows a Papuan man slowly dying from a gunshot wound as the soldier with the cell-phone camera taunts him, calling him a savage.

I spoke with Suciwati Munir, the widow of the renowned Indonesian human-rights activist Munir Said Thalib, at the Bonn, Germany, reunion of Right Livelihood Award laureates. Her husband, an unflinching critic of the Indonesian military, received the award shortly before his death. In 2004, as he traveled to the Netherlands for a law fellowship, on board the Indonesian national airline Garuda, he was given an upgrade to business class. There, he was served tea laced with arsenic. He was dead before the plane landed. Suciwati has a message for Obama:

“If Obama has a commitment to human rights in the world … he has to pay attention to the human-rights situation in Indonesia. And the first thing that he should ask to President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono is to resolve the Munir case.” I asked her if she wanted to meet President Obama when he came to Indonesia. She replied: “Maybe yes, because I want to remind him about the human-rights situation in Indonesia. Maybe not, because of his wrong decision, he has perpetuated the impunity in Indonesia.”

This was the third attempt by President Obama to visit Indonesia. His first delay was to allow him to push through health-care reform. The second was canceled in the wake of the BP oil disaster. This time he made it, although the Mount Merapi eruption forced him to leave a few hours early. Speaking from Jakarta, journalist Nairn reflected: “It’s nice to be able to go back to where you grew up, but you shouldn’t bring weapons as a gift. You shouldn’t bring training for the people who are torturing your old neighbors.”

Amy Goodman is the host of “Democracy Now!,” an independent, daily global TV/radio news hour airing on more than 950 stations in the United States and around the world. She is the author of “Breaking the Sound Barrier,” recently released in paperback and now a New York Times best-seller.

© 2011 Amy Goodman

“Three years ago, President Obama cut a secret deal with pharmaceutical company lobbyists to secure the industry’s support for his national health care law. Despite Obama’s promises during his campaign to run a transparent administration, the deal has been shrouded in mystery ever since. But internal emails obtained by House Republicans now provide evidence that a deal was struck and GOP investigators are promising to release more details in the coming weeks.

“What the hell?” White House Deputy Chief of Staff Jim Messina, who is now Obama’s campaign manager, complained to a lobbyist for the Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America (PhRMA) in January 15, 2010 email. “This wasn’t part of our deal.”

This reference to “our deal” came two months before the final passage of Obamacare in an email with the subject line, “FW: TAUZIN EMAIL.” At the time, Billy Tauzin was president and CEO of PhRMA.

The email was uncovered as part of investigation into Obama’s closed-door health care negotiations launched by the House Energy and Commerce committee’s oversight panel.

“In the coming weeks the Committee intends to show what the White House agreed to do as part of its deal with the pharmaceutical industry and how the full details of this agreement were kept from both the public and the House of Representatives,” the committee’s Republican members wrote in a memo today.

On June 20, 2009, Obama released a terse 296-word statement announcing a deal between pharmaceutical companies and the Senate that didn’t mention any involvement by the White House.

“The investigation has determined that the White House, primarily through Office of Health Reform Director Nancy Ann DeParle and Messina, with involvement from Chief of Staff Rahm Emmanuel, was actively engaged in these negotiations while the role of Congress was limited,” the committee members wrote. “For example, three days before the June 20 statement, the head of PhRMA promised Messina, ‘we will deliver a final yes to you by morning.’ Meanwhile, Ms. DeParle all but confirmed that half of the Legislative Branch was shut out in an email to a PhRMA representative: ‘I think we should have included the House in the discussions, but maybe we never would have gotten anywhere if we had.’”
[read more]

Obama’s Half-Billion-Dollar Crony Drug Deal

“Here comes Siga-Gate.

This latest Chicago-style payoff on your dime involves a dubious smallpox drug backed by a liberal billionaire investor, along with a former union boss who was one of the White House’s most frequent visitors. They’re the “1 percent” with 100 percent immunity from the selectively outraged Occupier mobs that purport to oppose partisan government bailouts and handouts to privileged corporations.

Ronald Perelman is the New York City-based leveraged buyout wheeler-dealer who controls Siga Technologies. He has donated nearly $130,000 mostly to Democrats over the past two election cycles alone (history here), and he forked over $50,000 to pay for the president’s lavish inaugural parties. A Siga affiliate (MacAndrews and Forbes) pitched in nearly half a million more in contributions — 65 percent of which went to Democrats — and the firms have spent millions on lobbying.

Perelman’s pharma company makes an experimental antiviral pill used by smallpox patients who received diagnoses too late to be treated with the existing smallpox vaccine. Smallpox experts cast doubt on the need for the drug given ample vaccine stockpiles, the remoteness of a mass attack and questions about its efficacy. But over the objections of federal contract negotiators, competitors and scientists, the Obama administration approved a lucrative $433 million no-bid deal for Siga in May. No other manufacturers were able to compete for the “sole source” procurement, according to the Los Angeles Times.”[read more]

Exxon Makes $104 Million In Profit Per Day So Far In 2012, While Americans Are Stuck With A Higher Gas Bill

By Rebecca Leber on Apr 26, 2012 at 10:08 am

Last year, ExxonMobil, one of the world’s most profitable companies, earned $1,300 in profits per second. As consumers paid record-high springtime gas prices, Exxon posted first quarter profits of $9.45 billion.

This is down slightly from the first quarter of 2011, when Exxon posted $10.65 billion in profits. Exxon benefited from the high price of oil, but analysts expected slightly lower profits due in part to the cheap price of natural gas, which the company is heavily invested in.

A by-the-numbers look shows how Exxon’s executives and Big Oil’s allies are rewarded generously for the company’s billions, while Americans are stuck with rising gas bills:

$9.45 billion profits, or almost $104 million per day in the first three months of the year.

13 percent: The tax rate Exxon paid last year, lower than the average American family.

60 percent of its first quarter earnings, or $5.7 billion, on buying back stock. Became world’s largest dividend payer by increasing dividends 21 percent.

$1,091,000: Political contributions sent to federal politicians for the 2012 election cycle, making it the largest oil and gas spender.

91% of these contributions went to Republicans.

More than $52,000,000: Lobbying for the first three years of the Obama presidency, 50 percent more than in the Bush Administration.

$34.9 million: Exxon CEO Rex Tillerson’s salary for 2011, a 20 percent raise.

$52,300: Political contributions from Exxon CEO Rex Tillerson in the 2012 cycle, alone.

No. 2: Fortune 500 list of richest companies and for highest-paid CEO.[read more]

 


The Kony Scam:Funded by Chase Bank and Big Oil

 

You have probably seen or heard about the Kony 2012 campaign. The professionally produced advertising campaign from Invisible Children has gone viral to demand that a Ugandan rebel leader, Joseph Kony, turn himself in for war crimes.

The video makes a compelling, emotional appeal based on a simplified, yet reasonably accurate history of child soldiers in Kony’s “The Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA). Invisible Children would like the US to be more involved in bringing Joseph Kony to justice.

Let’s look at the context. As with most politics, it’s a bit complex. It gets exciting near the end, I promise.

The British established a colony in Uganda, and entrusted the Acholi tribe with the military power to keep the peace.

In 1986, Ugandan President Tito Okello, a member of the Acholi tribe was overthrown in a violent revolution by Yoweri Museveni, a corrupt Marxist dictator who quickly outlawed political opposition. Religion is also a factor: the Acholis are Catholic, and Museveni is a born-again Christian.

In Uganda, peaceful political parties and protests are illegal.

Without any ability to form an opposing political party, many Acholis initially supported Joseph Kony‘s rebellion. But Kony’s popularity failed when he began to brutally enforce his own strict version of Catholicism on his tribe to create a new government based on his interpretation of the 10 Commandments.

When his popularity dissipated, Kony turned to forced recruitments. It’s estimated that Kony’s forces have kidnapped between 60 to 100,000 children since 1986, often killing their parents in the process.

Uganda (a Catholic and born-again Christian country) has sided with South Sudan (also Christian) in their struggle for freedom against Northern Sudan (predominantly Muslim). In retaliation, Northern Sudan began funding Joseph Kony in the mid-1990′s.

Now, the war in Sudan has reached an unstable truce. After the International Criminal Court issued an indictment against Joseph Kony, Northern Sudan cut off his funding. Joseph Kony has disappeared, and is probably no longer in Uganda. Many believe he is hiding in the African bush, probably in Congo. The fact is – Kony is no longer leading an army or kidnapping child soldiers.

So, here’s the big question: Why does Invisible Children want the United States and the United Kingdom focused on a retired rebel leader, Joseph Kony, when there are still many other active child armies in other countries?

Joseph Kony has been kidnapping children since 1986 (over 26 years) why should we care now? What has changed?

OIL.

In 2005, oil was discovered in Uganda. Tullow Oil has been planning to pump 200,000 barrels of oil per day, but the Marxist President Yoweri Museveni’s administration is now very unstable and reeling from bribery scandals. The political instability and existence of the Lord’s Resistance Army, has slowed the plans to produce oil.

In 2008, the United States military assisted financially and logistically during the unsuccessful Operation Lightning Thunder to stop Kony.

In May 2010, U.S. President Barack Obama signed into law the Lord’s Resistance Army Disarmament and Northern Uganda Recovery Act that made it American policy to kill or capture Joseph Kony and to crush his rebellion.

In October 2011, Obama authorized the deployment of approximately 100 combat-equipped U.S. troops to central Africa. Their goal is to help regional forces remove Kony and senior LRA leaders from the battlefield.

JP Morgan, Chase Bank, and Exxon Mobil

Chase Bank contributed $1 million to Invisible Children to help them produce the KONY 2012 campaign, among other programs. AND JP Morgan Chase is also a major investment banker of Tullow Oil.. That’s right, the oil company that needs US military help to pump oil out of Uganda.

Exxon Mobil is now a major partner in the oil drilling operation in Uganda. JP Morgan and Chase Bank are intimately tied to Exxon Mobil through the Rockefeller family with corporate board members sharing positions in both companies.

Invisible Children Fails to Meet Standards for Charities

The Better Business Bureau has strongly criticized Invisible Children for its lack of transparency.

“I don’t understand their reluctance to provide basic information,” says H. Art Taylor, President and CEO of the BBB Wise Giving Alliance. “The whole point of the effort is to shine the light of truth on a terrible atrocity, and yet they seem to be reluctant to turn that light on themselves. It’s really unfortunate.”

Only 37% of the money raised by Invisible Children goes to the communities that desperately need the money in Uganda.

Conclusion

Invisible Children may be a legitimate charity interested in helping the people of Uganda, but they are being used by oil companies and banks to encourage American military intervention in Uganda.

Before you donate to a cause, or even forward a video, learn about the real issues. The underlying cause of Joseph Kony’s rise to power is the Marxist President Yoweri Museveni’s ban on legitimate politcal opposition, and the support by foreign governments like Sudan. Arresting Joseph Kony may help encourage peace, but the real answer is political and economic reform inside Uganda.

Sending US military troops is not the answer to every political problem in the world.

Short URL: http://occupythe99percent.com/?p=12577

 


Central Bankers Agenda: Obama Sanctions Against Iran Over Gold

August 3, 2012 Last month, President Obama placed more stringent sanctions on Iran’s oil sales and financial transactions. And in the next breath, he claimed that because Iran is supposedly developing a nuclear weapon, Obama will “once again reaffirming [the US government’s] commitment to hold the Iranian government accountable for its actions.”

While Israel is threatening to attack Iran pre-emptively to “knock out” nuclear facilities, Benjamin Netanyahu, Israeli Prime Minister asserts that “all the sanctions and diplomacy so far have not set back the Iranian (nuclear) program by one iota And that’s why I believe that we need a strong and credible military threat coupled with the sanctions to have a chance to change that situation.”

Sanctions placed against Iran are directed at their economy and value of their currency because Iran has been using gold instead of the US dollar to trade with other nations for their oil.

Obama’s latest round of sanctions, by executive order, is aimed at preventing “payment mechanisms for the purchase of Iranian oil to circumvent existing sanctions.” By targeting specific banks, Bank of Kunlun of China and Elaf Islamic Bank of Iraq, Obama wants to make sure “transactions worth millions of dollars on behalf of Iranian banks that are subject to sanctions for their links to Iran’s illicit proliferation activities.”

Obama warned that the US will “expose any financial institution, no matter where they are located, that allows the increasingly desperate Iranian regime to retain access to the international financial system.”

Working for the banking Elite, Obama has made his position clear. He is using the might of the US military to stop Iran from further devaluation of the US dollar; and now threatening all other financial institutions and nations that deal with Iran or facilitate payment in any currency other than the US dollar.

Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, Iran’s Supreme Leader, believes that US will declare “war within weeks”. Khamenei said: “While retaliation had been exhaustively drilled in regular military exercises in the past year, Khamenei ordered the biggest fortification project in Iran’s history to save its nuclear program from even the mightiest of America’s super-weapons. Rocks are being gathered from afar, piled on key nuclear installations, covered with many tons of poured concrete and finally plated with steel.”

Iran’s plan to close the Strait of Hormuz is a strategic response to the US by cutting off 33% of the world’s shipments of oil. It was met with underwater drones that targeted the blockade. As well as Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates opening pipelines to bypass the Strait in efforts to increase oil that is moved out of the region.

Last month, reports of war games began surfacing. The Israeli Air Force is practicing aerial combat maneuvers with the US, NATO and European armed forces. They are collaborating on potential strike zones; mainly focusing on Iran’s nuclear facilities.

Joe Biden, US vice-president confirmed that the US would not “stand in the way” of Israel’s attack on Iran. “The US cannot dictate to another sovereign nation what they can and cannot do. Israel can determine for itself – it’s a sovereign nation – what’s in their interest and what they decide to do relative to Iran and anyone else.”

Ephraim Halevy, former Israeli spy, warns that Iran should take Israel seriously – that they have every intention of striking and that the “next 12 weeks are very critical”.

Netanyahu, fearing that the newly elected president will not want to have a winter war, wants to attack before the elections season begins in the US.

In globalist speak this is just rhetoric, as the plan to invade Iran centers around the global reserve currency and not nuclear facilities. Whether or not Obama is re-elected is irrelevant if the US dollar is further compromised by the actions of nations using gold as currency.Source


Emails Reveal Top Obama Administration Officials Were Behind Deal with Pharmaceutical Industry:The Documentation

 

May 16, 2012

WASHINGTON, DC – The House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations, chaired by Rep. Cliff Stearns (R-FL), today released new information that confirms the White House played a pivotal role in cutting a “deal” with the Pharmaceutical Manufacturers of America (PhRMA), the details of which have never been fully disclosed to the public. The latest revelations come as part of an ongoing investigation launched more than a year ago to allow Congress and the American public to understand the process that was used to write legislation that fundamentally transformed the nation’s health care system.

In 2008, then-candidate Barack Obama repeatedly made promises to usher in an era of transparency, “put an end to the game playing,” and broadcast health care negotiations on C-SPAN. However, in 2009, a series of conflicting media accounts documented efforts by the authors of the health care law to make an agreement or series of agreements with health care industry stakeholders to squelch opposition and generate support for the legislation. These meetings and negotiations with various outside interest groups were never made public, and many members of Congress – from both parties – were not a part of those negotiations. Since those reports lacked consistency and concrete details, the committee launched an investigation on February 18, 2011, to determine whether “deals” were made, who made them, and what specifically was negotiated.

Today, a staff memo distributed to Republican members of the committee provided further information regarding the development of the “deal,” and the parties involved in negotiating specific policy outcomes to secure support for the legislation. Based on email exchanges and other primary source material, it appears the deal was reached not solely between PhRMA and the U.S. Senate Finance Committee, but that top personnel in the White House were involved in negotiating and approving this deal. The committee’s investigation determined that the White House, specifically Office of Health Reform Director Nancy Ann DeParle, Deputy Chief of Staff Jim Messina, and Chief of Staff Rahm Emmanuel, actively engaged in these negotiations while the role of Congress was limited. Their involvement in these previously undisclosed negotiations is particularly noteworthy since it contradicts the president’s promises of transparency.

While news reports speculated on the details of the “deal,” the White House has been vague and contradictory about the specifics beyond the $80 billion threshold. In the coming weeks, the committee will show what the White House agreed to do as part of its deal with the pharmaceutical industry, and how the full details of this agreement were kept from both the public and the House of Representatives.

And as the memo highlights, the important question to be answered is what the White House got in return.

 


Draft U.N. arms trade treaty full of holes, activists say

 

(Reuters) – The first draft of a U.N. treaty to regulate the $60 billion global arms trade was slammed on Tuesday by activists as having “more holes than a leaky bucket” as negotiators scramble to reach a consensus by Friday.

One person every minute dies from armed violence around the world, and arms control activists say a convention is needed to prevent illicitly traded guns from pouring into conflict zones and fuelling wars and atrocities. Conflicts in Syria and elsewhere show a treaty is necessary, they add.
“Our concern with this text is that at the moment it has more holes than a leaky bucket,” Anna Macdonald, head of arms control at Oxfam, told reporters. “And if these holes are not closed we won’t end up with a treaty that saves lives.”

After losing the first week of the month-long negotiations to procedural wrangling, delegations from around the world now only have three days left to work on the delayed draft text before a possible vote. The treaty must be approved unanimously, so any one country can effectively veto a deal.

But if a consensus cannot be reached, the treaty may not be doomed. Activists have said nations supporting a stronger pact could then bring a treaty to the 193-nation U.N. General Assembly and adopt it with a two-thirds majority vote.

“The text that leaves this conference must not be the text with these loopholes. It’s got to be a decent text even if it goes back to the General Assembly,” said Brian Wood, arms control and human rights manager at Amnesty International.

The draft treaty currently says that it would only come into effect after it has been ratified by 65 countries, which some activists say could take up to 10 years. Arms control campaigners say only 30 ratifications should be needed.

“Every major element … has major loopholes,” said Peter Herby, head of the International Committee for the Red Cross arms unit. “There is a very high risk this treaty will simply ratify the status quo, rather than changing the status quo.”

“Rather than producing the highest possible international standards for the transfer of all conventional weapons, it would allow many countries to simply continue doing what they’re doing,” Herby said.

“BUSINESS AS USUAL”

While most U.N. member states favour a strong treaty, activists said they were at times being drowned out in negotiations by objections and disruptions from a minority of states including Syria, North Korea, Iran, Egypt and Algeria.

There are divisions on key issues, such as whether human rights should be a mandatory criterion for determining whether governments should permit weapons exports to specific countries.

Herby said the draft references to humanitarian law were “unlikely to make a great deal of difference in practice.”

Macdonald listed several criticisms. He said the range of weapons in the draft treaty needed to be expanded, particularly to include ammunition; the rules governing risk assessments that countries must do before authorizing an arms sale needed to be tightened; and the whole treaty needed to be broadened to cover the entire global arms trade and not just illicit transactions.

The Conflict Awareness Project said that when it came to regulating arms brokers the draft treaty was “so weak and watered down it will give comfort to illicit gun runners.”

“The feeble treaty language means business as usual for traffickers who are filling the arsenals of the world’s worst human rights abusers,” said Kathi Lynn Austin of the Conflict Awareness Project.

The negotiations on the treaty in New York were delayed for the first week by a dispute over Palestinian participation, which was eventually resolved by allowing the delegation to sit at the front of the negotiating hall but without the right to participate as states with voting rights.

Such procedural bickering was typical of the arms trade talks, diplomats say, as countries that would prefer not to have a strong treaty tried to prevent the negotiations from moving forward. In February, preparatory talks on the rules nearly collapsed due to procedural wrangling and other disagreements.

One of the reasons this month’s negotiations are taking place is that the United States, the world’s biggest arms trader accounting for over 40 percent of global conventional arms transfers, reversed U.S. policy on the issue after Barack Obama became president and decided in 2009 to support a treaty.

But U.S. officials say Washington insisted in February on having the ability to veto a weak treaty.

“We have been making clear throughout our red lines (limits), including that we will not accept any treaty that infringes on Americans’ Second Amendment rights,” a U.S. official who did not want to be identified said on Tuesday, referring to U.S. domestic rights to bear arms — a sensitive issue in the United States.

The other five top arms suppliers are Britain, China, France, Germany and Russia.

 


White House to answer: When is killing Americans okay?

 

 

ANAHEIM, Calif. — Anaheim city officials have agreed to ask the U.S. attorney’s office to investigate recent police shootings.

Tuesday’s move comes amid raucous protests over two deadly police shootings over the weekend, including one of an unarmed man running from officers.

Police stepped up patrols and some donned riot gear outside the doors of City Hall’s council chamber as hundreds demonstrated on the street.

The shooting of Manuel Diaz has sparked four nights of protests. On Saturday, angry demonstrators hurled rocks and bottles at officers who were securing the scene for investigators, and police responded by firing bean bags and pepper balls at the crowd.

The city council wants federal investigators to also look into police response to the protests.

THIS IS A BREAKING NEWS UPDATE. Check back soon for further information. AP’s earlier story is below.

Dozens of protesters heckled police officers Tuesday as they denounced two deadly officer-involved shootings over the weekend, including one of an unarmed man who his family alleged was shot in the back of the head.

“Shame on you, you shot him nine times,” the raucous crowd shouted as motorcycle officers rode by.

Police stepped up patrols and some donned riot gear outside the doors of City Hall’s council chamber. The building was packed with people trying to get into the chamber, where the council was expected to discuss weekend shootings that have stoked anger over a spike in officer-involved shootings in the city.

Theresa Smith, whose son was killed on Dec. 11, 2009, by Anaheim police officers at a Walmart store, said she went by the scene of Saturday’s shooting of 25-year-old Manuel Diaz and was astounded by what she saw.

“There were pieces of brain on the God darn grass, in front of all these children, in front of all these people,” Smith said. “This traumatizes people and these people are angry.”

On Tuesday, Diaz’s family filed a civil rights lawsuit seeking $50 million in damages from the city of Anaheim and its police department, claiming he was wrongfully shot, said lawyer James Rumm.

The killing of Diaz and another man on Sunday have taken the tally of shootings by police officers to six so far this year in this Orange County city, up from four a year before, said police Sgt. Bob Dunn. Five of the incidents have been fatal.

Mayor Tom Tait said a description from court papers relayed to him by a reporter that Diaz had been shot in the leg and in the back of his head was “unsettling.”

The Anaheim police union on Tuesday issued a statement defending the officers involved in the shootings and said both men killed were gang members who had criminal records.

The union also said that just before Diaz turned toward officers during Saturday’s incident, he pulled an object from his waistband – a common place where gang members hide guns.

“I believe that the independent investigations by the Orange County District Attorney’s Office into both incidents will show no wrongdoing by these officers,” said Kerry Condon, the police association’s president.

Anaheim is a city of contrasts that ranges from upscale, hilltop homes to packed, gritty apartment complexes. The city 25 miles southeast of Los Angeles is known as home to the Angels baseball team, and above all, to world-famous Disneyland.

As California’s Hispanic population has grown, so has the city’s, hitting nearly 53 percent in 2010, census figures show.

Residents’ concerns about the use of police force in the Orange County city aren’t new. Last month, Anaheim decided to look into hiring an independent investigator to review shootings by police amid protests by relatives of those killed in officers’ gunfire.

But Latino activists say that isn’t enough and want federal officials to probe the Saturday shooting of an unarmed man in broad daylight who police say was a gang member.

Benny Diaz, state director of the League of United Latin American Citizens in California, said he wants a citizen review commission to keep tabs on the police department, officers to undergo sensitivity training and federal officials to investigate.

“People are saying, `you know what? We have to stop this,'” said Diaz, adding that residents’ past requests for a probe of officer shootings have gone nowhere. “As an organization we are trying to find peace but there comes a point where you have to stand up strong.”

Tait, who has called for state and federal agencies to investigate the shooting, urged the community to remain calm and said he wanted to address any concerns in the Latino community.

“If the Latino community is saying there is a rift, then there is rift, and we need to address that,” he said.

Diaz’s death sparked three nights of protests. On Saturday, angry demonstrators hurled rocks and bottles at officers who were securing the scene for investigators, and police responded by firing bean bags and pepper balls at the crowd.

On Sunday, protesters swarmed police headquarters during a morning news conference and later set fire to a trash bin and pushed it into the street outside the apartment complex. On Monday night, Diaz’s mother was joined by the relatives of others killed in police shootings in a march near where her son was shot.

Police Chief John Welter said Saturday’s incident occurred after two officers approached three men who were acting suspiciously in an alleyway before running away. One of the officers chased Diaz to the front of the apartment complex.

The chief would not say what exactly led the officer to shoot Diaz. But he failed to heed police orders to stop and threw something on the roof of the complex that contained what officers believe to be heroin, Welter said.

Both officers were placed on paid leave pending an investigation.

The second shooting occurred Sunday when anti-gang officers spotted a suspected gang member in a stolen sport utility vehicle. A brief pursuit ended when three people jumped from the vehicle and ran. One suspect fired at an officer and the officer fired back, killing the gunman, who was identified as 21-year-old Joel Mathew Acevedo, authorities said.

Both incidents were under investigation by the county’s district attorney office, which asked witnesses to come forward with information or video footage of Saturday’s shooting.

The FBI is conducting a review to determine whether a civil rights investigation is warranted, said agency spokeswoman Laura Eimiller.Source

 

How exactly can the Obama administration get away with killing American citizens? The answer to that question and many more may be revealed Monday afternoon by United States Attorney General Eric Holder.

Attorney General Holder is expected to deliver a speech at Northwestern University School of Law in Chicago, Illinois on Monday, and an official close to the Obama-appointee say that the legal justification for the targeted killings of twp Americans will finally be addressed, months after the US assassinated two of its own overseas.

Two US-born citizens with alleged terrorist ties were executed in a “targeted kill” carried out by the CIA last year in Yemen. Despite never formally filing charges or bringing the men to court, Anwar al-Awlaki and Samir Khan were struck dead by a planned drone strike in September. Since then, the White House has defended the assassinations but has done little to formally address how, when or why the federal government is given the power to single out and kill its own citizens. Holder is expected to finally footnote those killings with an explanation Monday afternoon.

A source close to Mr. Holder tells the media that the top-secret “targeted kill” program will be a matter of discussion at Monday’s address in Chicago, although only offered that confirmation on condition of anonymity because the contents of the speech have not officially been publicized ahead of time.

The source adds that Holder will say the extrajudicial killings are allowed under the Authorization for Use of Military Force, a joint congressional resolution that was drafted only a week after the September 11 terrorist attacks in 2001. The same legislation has received added notoriety in recent months, as it is cited by Congress on the pages of the controversial National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2012. In a provision approved within the pages of the NDAA, the Authorization for Use of Military Force is used as reasoning to justify the indefinite detention of Americans believed to be aligned with hostile forces. Holder is expected to say that the same post-9/11 legislation allows for the killing of those alleged enemies, such al al-Awlaki, as well. President Obama signed the NDAA into law on December 31, 2011, granting himself the power to indefinitely detain Americans without charge.

Last month, Defense Department lawyer Jeh Johnson told an audience at Yale Law School that that Authorization for Use of Military Force does indeed allow for the killing of Americans, but tried to downplay that nasty “a-word” in his reasoning.

“Under well-settled legal principles, lethal force against a valid military objective, in an armed conflict, is consistent with the law of war and does not, by definition, constitute an ‘assassination,’” said Johnson. Attorney General Holder is expected to extrapolate on that from the Windy City.

If the killings of al-Awlaki and Khan are not constituted as a by-the-books definition of “assassination,” it opens up an unusual question: What exactly did the US do to the two alleged al-Qaeda members if it wasn’t an assassination? President Barack Obama approved for al-Awlaki to be added to a “kill or capture” list maintained by the CIA in April 2010, and the agency carried out the execution a little over a year later. Critics have since become concerned over not necessarily why such a list exists, but what legal justification the US has for adding the name of any American to it.

Following the September killing, then-presidential candidate Gary Johnson offered a statement asking Americans to concern the consequences of the assassination. “[O]ur government targeted a US citizen for death, and carried out that sentence on foreign soil. To my knowledge, that is a first, and a precedent that raises serious questions,” said Johnson, who formerly served as Governor of New Mexico — al-Awlaki’s home state.

Currently Republican Party contender, Congressman Ron Paul, was similarly suspicious of Obama adding al-Awlaki to a list that would eventually lead to a plotted execution. “Nobody knows if he ever killed anybody,” Paul responded at the time. “If the American people accept this blindly and casually…I think that’s sad.”

Congressman Paul has repeatedly reintroduced what he says is a dangerous reality established under the kill-order during televised GOP debates. United States Defense Secretary Leon Panetta has remained mostly mum on the manner, but told CBS’ 60 Minutes program last year that “the President of the United States has to sign off, and he should,” for the killings of Americans.

At least three lawsuits have been lobbed at the Obama White House since the targeted killings in hopes of seeing the internal memos that discuss the details. The justification for the executions is believed to be contained in a secret Justice Department memo, reports the Associated Press, but despite repeated requests filed under the Freedom of Information Act, the Obama administration has not released the Justice Department Office of Legal Counsel memorandum that allegedly explains the legal grounds on which the al-Awlaki assassination was allowed.

Last month the American Civil Liberties Union added itself to the list of critics that was taking Obama to court over the matter. In a post on their site published early February, the ACLU wrote that “the Obama administration has released very little information about the practice — its official position is that the targeted killing program is a state secret — and some of the information it has released has been misleading.”

“The government’s self-serving attitude toward transparency and disclosure is unacceptable,” the ACLU added. “Officials cannot be allowed to release bits of information about the targeted killing program when they think it will bolster their position, but refuse even to confirm [its] existence” when asked for information “in the service of real transparency and accountability.”

“It has not explained whether Samir Khan and Abdulrahman al-Awlaki were killed ‘collaterally’ or were targeted themselves. It has not said what measures, if any, it took to minimize the possibility that individuals not targeted would be killed incidentally,” the group wrote in their complaint.

Federal investigators have linked al-Awlaki to US Maj. Nidal Malik Hasan, the serviceman who opened fire at Fort Hood in 2009, as well as at least two other planned terrorist attacks on American soil.

Samir Khan, a Pakistani born in North Carolina, was also suspected of links to al-Qaeda. He started an online magazine connected to the group and wrote in the first issue that he had relocated to Yemen to “wage jihad for the rest of our lives.”RT

 


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