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CIA making secret payments to Karzai Admin.

CIA making secret payments to members of Karzai administration

Washington Post
August 27, 2010


U.S. PUPPET FOR AFGHANISTAN, Hamid Karzai

The CIA is making secret payments to multiple members of President Hamid Karzai’s administration, in part to maintain sources of information in a government in which the Afghan leader is often seen as having a limited grasp of developments, according to current and former U.S. officials.

The payments are long-standing in many cases and designed to help the agency maintain a deep roster of allies within the presidential palace. Some aides function as CIA informants, but others collect stipends under more informal arrangements meant to ensure their accessibility, a U.S. official said.

The CIA has continued the payments despite concerns that it is backing corrupt officials and undermining efforts to wean Afghans’ dependence on secret sources of income and graft.

Read Full Article Here

 

Key Karzai Aide Linked to CIA

New York Times
August 26, 2010

KABUL, Afghanistan — The aide to President Hamid Karzai of Afghanistan at the center of a politically sensitive corruption investigation is being paid by the Central Intelligence Agency, according to Afghan and American officials.

Mohammed Zia Salehi, the chief of administration for the National Security Council, appears to have been on the payroll for many years, according to officials in Kabul and Washington. It is unclear exactly what Mr. Salehi does in exchange for his money, whether providing information to the spy agency, advancing American views inside the presidential palace, or both.

Mr. Salehi’s relationship with the C.I.A. underscores deep contradictions at the heart of the Obama administration’s policy in Afghanistan, with American officials simultaneously demanding that Mr. Karzai root out the corruption that pervades his government while sometimes subsidizing the very people suspected of perpetrating it.

Mr. Salehi was arrested in July and released after Mr. Karzai intervened. There has been no suggestion that Mr. Salehi’s ties to the C.I.A. played a role in his release; rather, officials say, it is the fear that Mr. Salehi knows about corrupt dealings inside the Karzai administration.

Read Full Article Here

Hamid Karzai’s brother on CIA payroll

Afghan Puppet Government Wants US Troops Until 2024

 



U.S. Army Teaching Trainees to Kill Kids and Women

U.S. Army Teaching Trainees to Kill Kids and Women



Press TV

April 18, 2010

A former US Army specialist, who was part of the same unit that killed Iraqi civilians from a helicopter in 2007, says dehumanization is part of basic US army training.

In an interview with Press TV, Josh Steiber explained the three years he spent in the US Army before he asked to be released as a conscientious objector.

Steiber said “the dehumanizing of people from other countries” was the main reason that he quit the Army.

“As far back as basic training, we were singing songs as we were marching around, joking about killing women and children,” he told the Press TV correspondent in Washington.

The whistle-blower website, WikiLeaks, released a shocking video earlier this month showing US soldiers in an Apache helicopter killing dozens of Iraqi civilians, including two Reuters employees, in cold blood.

Steiber noted that he sang the following song together with other members of his unit:

    I went down to the market where all the women shop
    I took out my machete and I began to chop

    I went down to the park where all the children play
    I pulled out my machine gun and I began to spray

Steiber pointed out that he did not personally know the pilot in the video because they were attached to his unit only on that one fateful day.

However, the former US Army specialist was not surprised by what was on the tape.

“You’re focused on the physical aspect, but all along there is a psychological aspect.”

“I think it would be wrong to put all [the blame] on the individual soldier. I think it’s very telling that the secretary of defense, [Robert Gates], came out over the weekend and said there is no wrongdoing in the video.”

“And so if you’re only adjusting a few soldiers when the secretary of defense is putting his stamp of approval on this, then the system is not gonna change.”

Steiber concluded that there are other soldiers and veterans who are as disillusioned and war-weary as he is.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xH9xSHcFreY
U.S. Troops Apologize For Wikileaks Massacre Video

 



Leaked video shows troops killing civilians

Wikileak’d video shows U.S. troops killing civilians, children and 2 Reuters reporters

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QIvGhYQVPoQ

FULL VIDEO

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=is9sxRfU-ik

Iraqi family demands justice for US attack death

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Dw_5tZqzwXg

Leaked Photo Shows Detainee’s Lips Sewn Shut

Military Massacre of Pregnant Afghan Women Covered Up as ‘Honor Killings’

Ret. intel officer: US troops violated Rules of Engagement in Reuters shooting

Journalist Groups Demand Apache Massacre Investigation

 



CIA and Taliban working together

CIA and Taliban working together

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bIFC2Ty2J5k

Blackwater, US Military Working For Taliban Drug Lords

Are America’s Mercenary Armies Really Drug Cartels?

Congress to probe ‘U.S. funding of Taliban’

War tax proposed to pay for protecting Afghan opium fields, bribing Taliban

U.S. Army paying the Taliban not to shoot at them

Taliban Still Working for the CIA?

 



Saddam’s Nuke Salesman Was Protected By U.S. Government

Saddam’s Nuke Salesman Was Protected By U.S. Government

Paul Joseph Watson
Prison Planet.com
March 10, 2010

The Washington Post has completely whitewashed new revelations concerning how close Saddam Hussein came to obtaining a nuclear bomb by failing to mention the fact that the provider, Khan Research Laboratories, was shielded from investigation by the U.S. government for decades.

“As troops massed on his border near the start of the Persian Gulf War, Iraqi President Saddam Hussein weighed the purchase of a $150 million nuclear “package” deal that included not only weapons designs but also production plants and foreign experts to supervise the building of a nuclear bomb, according to documents uncovered by a former U.N. weapons inspector,” reports the Post today.

“The offer, made in 1990 by an agent linked to disgraced Pakistani scientist Abdul Qadeer Khan, guaranteed Iraq a weapons-assembly line capable of producing nuclear warheads in as little as three years.”

However, the report completely fails to even mention the fact that Khan Research Laboratories, the source from which Saddam would have procured a nuclear bomb, was protected from investigation by the U.S. government since at least the mid-1970’s, as investigative journalist Greg Palast exposed in a 2001 BBC report.

In 2004, Dr. Abdul Qadeer Khan, the father of Pakistan’s atom bomb program, admitted sharing nuclear technology via a worldwide smuggling network that included facilities in Malaysia that manufactured key parts for centrifuges.

Khan’s collaborator B.S.A. Tahir ran a front company out of Dubai that shipped centrifuge components to North Korea.

Despite Dutch authorities being deeply suspicious of Khan’s activities as far back as 1975, the CIA prevented them from arresting him on two occasions.

“The man was followed for almost ten years and obviously he was a serious problem. But again I was told that the secret services could handle it more effectively,” former Dutch Prime Minister Ruud Lubbers said. “The Hague did not have the final say in the matter. Washington did.”

Lubbers stated that Khan was allowed to slip in and out of the Netherlands with the blessing of the CIA, eventually allowing him to become the “primary salesman of an extensive international network for the proliferation of nuclear technology and know-how,” according to George W. Bush himself, and sell nuclear secrets that allowed North Korea to build nuclear bombs.

“Lubbers suspects that Washington allowed Khan’s activities because Pakistan was a key ally in the fight against the Soviets,” reports CFP. “At the time, the US government funded and armed mujahideen such as Osama bin Laden. They were trained by Pakistani intelligence to fight Soviet troops in Afghanistan. Anwar Iqbal, Washington correspondent for the Pakistani newspaper Dawn, told ISN Security Watch that Lubbers’ assertions may be correct. “This was part of a long-term foolish strategy. The US knew Pakistan was developing nuclear weapons but couldn’t care less because it was not going to be used against them. It was a deterrent against India and possibly the Soviets.”

In September 2005 it emerged that the Amsterdam court which sentenced Khan to four years imprisonment in 1983 had lost the legal files pertaining to the case. The court’s vice-president, Judge Anita Leeser, accused the CIA of stealing the files. “Something is not right, we just don’t lose things like that,” she told Dutch news show NOVA. “I find it bewildering that people lose files with a political goal, especially if it is on request of the CIA. It is unheard of.”

In 2005, Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf acknowledged that Khan had provided centrifuges and their designs to North Korea.

Having armed once branch of the “axis of evil,” it’s no surprise that Khan was also used in an attempt to arm Saddam Hussein with nuclear weapons, opening up another perfect justification for Iraq to subsequently be invaded and occupied by U.S. forces.

Although the 2003 invasion was sold on the lie that Saddam was hiding weapons of mass destruction which proved to be non-existent, it wasn’t for the want of trying, since efforts to arm Saddam with nuclear weapons via the Khan network were a mere continuation of the U.S. government’s program to provide Saddam with chemical and biological weapons, tools used to commit atrocities that were later cited by the U.S. as one of the primary reasons for the attack.

Of course, since the Washington Post is a mouthpiece for the new world order and the Bilderberg Group that owns it, in covering the Khan-Saddam connection writer Joby Warrick knows that his bosses wouldn’t be pleased if he actually gave you more than half the story, which is why his article amounts to nothing more than a misleading whitewash.

 



Loose Change 9/11: An American Coup

Loose Change 9/11: An American Coup

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tkPO6ksgyVM

Pentagon cab driver ADMITS 9/11 attack was staged

911 Mysteries: Controlled Demolition

 



Blackwater, US Military Working For Taliban Drug Lords

Blackwater, US Military Working For Taliban Drug Lords
Blackwater and India’s Intelligence Agency are protecting and supporting Taliban to carry out operations in Pakistan

Veterans Today
January 23, 2010

The following article is by Gordon Duff, a Marine Vietnam veteran, grunt and 100% disabled vet. He has been a UN Diplomat, defense contractor and is a widely published expert on military and defense issues. He is active in the financial industry and is a specialist on global trade. Gordon Duff acts as political and economic advisor to a number of governments in Africa and the Middle East.

BLACKWATER/XE ACCUSED OF COMPLICITY IN TERRORISM AND WAR AGAINST US TROOPS

TOP TALIBAN MILITANTS RECEIVE MEDICAL CARE AT BAGRAM AIR FORCE BASE

Secretary of Defense Robert Gates has been briefed by the Pakistani Military High Command that they are being overwhelmed by highly trained and extremely well armed militants in the border regions and terrorists operating across the country. We have been told by the highest sources that Blackwater/Xe and other US based mercenary groups have been actively attacking police, military and intelligence organizations in Pakistan as part of operations under employment of the Government of India and their allies in Afghanistan, the drug lords, whose followers make up the key components of the Afghan army.

Investigations referenced in the Pakistan Daily Mail by abrina Elkani and Steve Nelson indicate that, rather than hunt terrorists who have been killing Americans, these groups have actually taken key militant leaders into Afghanistan where they are kept safe and even offered medical treatment by the United States military. Years ago, we all heard the rumor that Osama bin Laden had received care at a US hospital in Qatar after leaving Sudan to take over what we claim was the planning of 9/11. FBI transcripts verify that bin Laden, according to testimony by former FBI translator Sibel Edmonds, was working for the US at that time and had maintained contact with his CIA handlers through the fateful summer of 2001.

The Army of Pakistan has been regularly capturing advanced weapons of Indian manufacture from militants in the border region. India maintains 17 “consular” camps inside Pakistan, near the border, adjacent to Blackwater facilities, falsely designated as CIA or USAID stations. Pakistan claims these operations train Taliban soldiers and terrorists for operations against civilian targets in Pakistan. Thousands have died in Pakistan over recent months during these attacks. Pakistan also contents these same groups are, not only fighting the Pakistan military but the Americans as well.

General Stanley McChrystal had withdrawn American forces from key areas in Afghanistan across from enemy held regions under attack by the Army of Pakistan. We are now told that this allowed those areas to become safe havens for forces formerly operating in Pakistan, who are now enjoying the freedom and hospitality of, not only Afghanistan but are being ignored by the NATO forces in the region.

The untold story is the massive complicity of Americans with their private airline, now suspected in yet another war, not Vietnam, not Central America/Iran Contra but Afghanistan, for a third time, of smuggling narcotics. The pattern is impossible to ignore.

Hired Killers in Haiti

Iran says US, UK, Canada assist Afghan drug trade

Are America’s Mercenary Armies Really Drug Cartels?

 



Bin Laden’s Ghost Claims Flight 253 Attack

Bin Laden’s Ghost Claims Flight 253 Attack

NoWorldSystem
January 25, 2010

Yet another attempt into making sure everyone is properly scared of another devastating 9/11-style attack on US soil. According to the new Bin Laden audiotape he is claiming responsibility for the foiled Flight 253 attack on a Detroit airliner and promises more attacks if US continues to support Israel. CIA-linked IntelCenter, –a company that was CAUGHT red-handed manipulating an al-Zawahiri video– now claims that this new audio is a ‘possible indicator‘ for an upcoming attack within the next 12 months.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6WhfXBXk15s

The only purpose for videos like this is to promote fear and to rationalize U.S. occupation in the middle east. However, many people are upset with the occupation of Blackwater in Pakistan and the 700 total deaths from drone strikes, the remorseless night-killings of Afghanis and the $57,077 a minute price the U.S. taxpayers are paying to protect opium crops. Not to mention the people are angry at the recent U.S. air-strike on Yemen that killed at least 120 innocent civilians, including children in December 2009.

The audiotape also fuses the links between Flight 253, AlQaeda and Yemen that will give the government talking points for the reason of the destabilization of the regions and the U.S. economy. The authenticity of the new bin laden tape is unknown, it wouldn’t be a stretch to say that it’s probably an impostor that sounds like Bin Laden. In the November 12, 2002 Bin Laden recording, voice-recognition experts in Switzerland said that it was 95% certain the tape was not the voice of the AlQaeda leader, that “it could be an impostor”.

It seems that now more than ever do they want to keep perpetuating the notion that Bin Laden is alive and well to keep the War on Terror going and to keep the American people infuriated that this man who supposedly did 9/11 is still walking and talking. The U.S. Department and the FBI released a photoshop rendition of an aged Bin Laden that turned out to be from online photo of Spanish politician Gaspar Llamazares.


An organization with a budget of billions of dollars was resorting to comic-like methods in its pursuit of terrorists and criminals, said the daily El Mundo.

Is Bin Laden DEAD?

Many people were so traumatized from the events of 9/11/2001 that they immediately believed that an unknown group called AlQaeda and its so-called leader Bin Laden were the culprits based on fear alone. We were told by the Bush administration that if we did not act, the terrorists will hit us again, and so the country was coerced into obedience and accepted what they were told.

We are continued to be coerced by videotapes despite the many prominent men and women who say that Bin Laden is dead from either health problems, military strike or assassination:

This is what former USMC Colonel Bob Pappas had to say about the death of Bin Laden;

    bin Laden is dead, he was killed during the attacks on Tora Bora. The pathetic political nonsense spewed by Senator John Kerry and his lackeys that the Bush administration allowed bin Laden to walk unmolested into a Pakistani sanctuary is hogwash, no, it’s bovine scatology.”

    “However, the administration probably knew that bin Laden was dead, as does this current one, a notion reinforced by a statement made during the waning months of the Bush Administration by Vice President Cheney to that effect; and for that reason among others the Administration chose make Iraq the main effort in the War on Terror.”

According to Afghan President Hamid Karzai says Osama bin Laden is “probably” dead. FBI counter-terrorism chief, Dale Watson, also says he thinks Osama bin Laden is “probably” dead. Pakistan President Asif Ali Zadari says “I don’t think he’s alive” even his counterpart Benazir Bhutto claims Bin Laden was assassinated by “Omar Sheikh”.

Regardless if he’s dead or not, his whereabouts still remain a mystery and yet still remains the big-bad-boogieman that is continually propped up every time he is needed (dropping poll numbers) in order to control the minds of the American people. It won’t be long now until there is a need for another ‘mastermind’ (one that isn’t a corpse) that will take his place as the most evil man on earth.

 

Osama Videos Behind the Scenes

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pgKdXYD9VBI

Osama bin Laden: A dead nemesis perpetuated by the US government

 



Gates Admits Blackwater Operating in Pakistan

Gates Admits Blackwater Operating in Pakistan

Raw Story
January 22, 2010

The Pentagon has gone into damage control mode after Defense Secretary Robert Gates appeared to confirm that security contractor Blackwater is operating in Pakistan.

The admission, quickly denied by Defense Department officials, has set fire to long-simmering rumors inside Pakistan about the involvement of for-profit contractors in the war against the Taliban.

Defense Department officials say Gates did not mean to suggest that Blackwater is now operating on Pakistani soil when a journalist from Pakistan’s Express TV asked him about military contractors’ activities.

In the interview, which took place Thursday, Gates was asked “about another issue that has come up and again … about the phone security companies [sic] that have been operating in Iraq, in Afghanistan and now in Pakistan. Xe International, formerly known as Blackwater or Data Corp. Under what rules are they operating here in Pakistan?”

“Well, they’re operating as individual companies here in Pakistan, in Afghanistan and in Iraq,” Gates replied. “If they’re contracting with us or with the State Department here in Pakistan, then there are very clear rules set forth by the State Department and by ourselves.”

Pentagon backtracks after Gates admits Blackwater operating in PakistanThe Pentagon has gone into damage control mode after Defense Secretary Robert Gates appeared to confirm that security contractor Blackwater is operating in Pakistan.

The admission, quickly denied by Defense Department officials, has set fire to long-simmering rumors inside Pakistan about the involvement of for-profit contractors in the war against the Taliban.

Defense Department officials say Gates did not mean to suggest that Blackwater is now operating on Pakistani soil when a journalist from Pakistan’s Express TV asked him about military contractors’ activities.

In the interview, which took place Thursday, Gates was asked “about another issue that has come up and again … about the phone security companies [sic] that have been operating in Iraq, in Afghanistan and now in Pakistan. Xe International, formerly known as Blackwater or Data Corp. Under what rules are they operating here in Pakistan?”

“Well, they’re operating as individual companies here in Pakistan, in Afghanistan and in Iraq,” Gates replied. “If they’re contracting with us or with the State Department here in Pakistan, then there are very clear rules set forth by the State Department and by ourselves.”
Story continues below…

“This appears to be a contradiction of previous statements made by the Defense Department, by Blackwater, by the Pakistani government and by the US embassy in Islamabad, all of whom claimed Blackwater was not in the country,” investigative reporter Jeremy Scahill wrote.

In November, Scahill reported that Blackwater is operating out of a covert US operating base in Karachi, where it “plan[s] targeted assassinations of suspected Taliban and Al Qaeda operatives, ‘snatch and grabs’ of high-value targets and other sensitive action inside and outside Pakistan.”

In December, the UK’s Guardian reported that Blackwater guards are patrolling a CIA airbase in Baluchistan province.

Gates’ comments have sent Pakistan’s legislature into an uproar, with at least one government official denying knowledge of Gates’ remarks.

Pakistan has been rife with rumors in recent years about private security contractors operating on the country’s soil, and “about purported US plots to seize Pakistan’s nuclear weapons and build permanent American military bases,” as the Wall Street Journal puts it.

“Mr. Gates himself may have inadvertently helped fuel a new rumor,” the Journal stated.

Defense officials tried to clarify the comment Thursday night, telling reporters that Mr. Gates had been speaking about contractor oversight more generally and that the Pentagon didn’t employ Xe [a.k.a. Blackwater] in Pakistan.

It was too late, however. By Friday morning, an array of Pakistani newspapers, television stations and radio programs reported that “Blackwater” had begun operating in Pakistan as well, citing Mr. Gates’s comments.

Whether it was a mistake or an unintentional admission, Gates’ comments are certain to complicate efforts by the US to prod Pakistan into refocusing away from its long-time rival, India, to the Taliban presence on the Afghanistan-Pakistan border.

To that end, the US has announced it will provide Pakistan with a dozen Shadow drones, smaller cousins of the Predator drones the US uses in air strikes in Afghanistan and Pakistan, the New York Times reports.

The US has also announced a new strategy for the war effort that focuses on the “re-integration” of Taliban fighters into mainstream society. The effort will be led by Afghan President Karzai. In discussing the plans Friday, Karzai “spoke about offering money and jobs to tempt Taliban fighters to lay down their arms and return to civilian life,” according to Pakistan’s Dawn Media Group.

 



Iran says US, UK, Canada assist Afghan drug trade

Iran says US, UK, Canada assist Afghan drug trade

Press TV
January 14, 2010

A senior Iranian anti-drug official has accused the US, Britain and Canada of playing a major role in Afghanistan’s lucrative drug trade.

On the sidelines of an anti-drug conference in Tehran, deputy head of Iran’s Drug Control Headquarters Taha Taheri said that Western powers are aiding the drug trade in Afghanistan.

“According to our indisputable information, the presence of the United States, Britain and Canada has not reduced the dug trade and the three countries have had major roles in the distribution of drugs,” IRIB quoted Taheri as saying on Thursday.

Iranian officials have always criticized Western countries over their policies towards Afghanistan, where poppy cultivation has drastically increased since the US-led military occupation of the country in 2001.

Taheri added that drug catalysts are being smuggled into Afghanistan through borders that are controlled by US, British and Canadian troops.

Some 13,000 tones of drug catalysts are brought into Afghanistan every year as the war-torn country is the producer of 90 percent of the world’s opium.

The UN office on drugs and crime said last month that the 2009 potential gross export value of opium from Afghanistan stood at $2.8 billion.

Iranian police officials maintain that drug production in Afghanistan has had a 40-fold increase since the US-led invasion of the country in 2001.

“More than 340 tones of drugs have been seized all over Iran in the past nine months,” IRNA quoted the commander of the drug squad, General Hamid Reza Hossein-Abadi, as saying earlier this month.

The UN has praised Tehran for its commitment to the fight against drug trafficking.

Are America’s Mercenary Armies Really Drug Cartels?

 



U.S., China Are on Collision Course Over Oil

Obama’s Yemeni odyssey targets China

Asia Times
January 9, 2010

A cursory look at the map of region will show that Yemen is one of the most strategic lands adjoining waters of the Persian Gulf and the Arabian Peninsula. It flanks Saudi Arabia and Oman, which are vital American protectorates. In effect, Uncle Sam is “marking territory” – like a dog on a lamppost. Russia has been toying with the idea of reopening its Soviet-era base in Aden. Well, the US has pipped Moscow in the race.

The US has signaled that the odyssey doesn’t end with Yemen. It is also moving into Somalia and Kenya. With that, the US establishes its military presence in an entire unbroken stretch of real estate all along the Indian Ocean’s western rim. Chinese officials have of late spoken of their need to establish a naval base in the region. The US has now foreclosed China’s options. The only country with a coastline that is available for China to set up a naval base in the region will be Iran. All other countries have a Western military presence. (are western military puppet governments)

The American intervention in Yemen is not going to be on the pattern of Iraq and Afghanistan. Obama will ensure he doesn’t receive any body bags of American servicemen serving in Yemen. That is what the American public expects from him. He will only deploy drone aircraft and special forces and “focus on providing intelligence and training to help Yemen counter al-Qaeda militants”, according to the US military. Obama’s main core objective will be to establish an enduring military presence in Yemen. This serves many purposes.

A new great game begins

First, the US move has to be viewed against the historic backdrop of the Shi’ite awakening in the region. The Shi’ites (mostly of the Zaidi group) have been traditionally suppressed in Yemen. Shi’ite uprisings have been a recurring theme in Yemen’s history. There has been a deliberate attempt to minimize the percentage of Shi’ites in Yemen, but they could be anywhere up to 45%.

More importantly, in the northern part of the country, they constitute the majority. What bothers the US and moderate Sunni Arab states – and Israel – is that the Believing Youth Organization led by Hussein Badr al-Houthi, which is entrenched in northern Yemen, is modeled after Hezbollah in Lebanon in all respects – politically, economically, socially and culturally.

Yemenis are an intelligent people and are famous in the Arabian Peninsula for their democratic temperament. The Yemeni Shi’ite empowerment on a Hezbollah-model would have far-reaching regional implications. Next-door Oman, which is a key American base, is predominantly Shi’ite. Even more sensitive is the likelihood of the dangerous idea of Shi’ite empowerment spreading to Saudi Arabia’s highly restive Shi’ite regions adjoining Yemen, which on top of it all, also happen to be the reservoir of the country’s fabulous oil wealth.

Saudi Arabia is entering a highly sensitive phase of political transition as a new generation is set to take over the leadership in Riyadh, and the palace intrigues and fault lines within the royal family are likely to get exacerbated. To put it mildly, given the vast scale of institutionalized Shi’ite persecution in Saudi Arabia by the Wahhabi establishment, Shi’ite empowerment is a veritable minefield that Riyadh is petrified about at this juncture. Its threshold of patience is wearing thin, as the recent uncharacteristic resort to military power against the north Yemeni Shi’ite communities bordering Saudi Arabia testifies.

The US faces a classic dilemma. It is all right for Obama to highlight the need of reform in Muslim societies – as he did eloquently in his Cairo speech last June. But democratization in the Yemeni context – ironically, in the Arab context – would involve Shi’ite empowerment. After the searing experience in Iraq, Washington is literally perched like a cat on a hot tin roof. It would much rather be aligned with the repressive, autocratic government of Saleh than let the genie of reform out of the bottle in the oil rich-region in which it has profound interests.

Obama has an erudite mind and he is not unaware that what Yemen desperately needs is reform, but he simply doesn’t want to think about it. The paradox he faces is that with all its imperfections, Iran happens to be the only “democratic” system operating in that entire region.

Iran’s shadow over the Yemeni Shi’ite consciousness worries the US to no end. Simply put, in the ideological struggle going on in the region, Obama finds himself with the ultra-conservative and brutally autocratic oligarchies that constitute the ruling class in the region. Conceivably, he isn’t finding it easy. If his own memoirs are to be believed, there could be times when the vague recollections of his childhood in Indonesia and his precious memories of his own mother, who from all accounts was a free-wheeling intellectual and humanist, must be stalking him in the White House corridors.

Israel moves in

But Obama is first and foremost a realist. Emotions and personal beliefs drain away and strategic considerations weigh uppermost when he works in the Oval Office. With the military presence in Yemen, the US has tightened the cordon around Iran. In the event of a military attack on Iran, Yemen could be put to use as a springboard by the Israelis. These are weighty considerations for Obama.

The fact is that no one is in control as a Yemeni authority. It is a cakewalk for the formidable Israeli intelligence to carve out a niche in Yemen – just as it did in northern Iraq under somewhat comparable circumstances.

Islamism doesn’t deter Israel at all. Saleh couldn’t have been far off the mark when he alleged last year that Israeli intelligence had been exposed as having kept links with Yemeni Islamists. The point is, Yemeni Islamists are a highly fragmented lot and no one is sure who owes what sort of allegiance to whom. Israeli intelligence operates marvelously in such twilight zones when the horizon is lacerated with the blood of the vanishing sun.

Israel will find a toehold in Yemen to be a god-sent gift insofar as it registers its presence in the Arabian Peninsula. This is a dream come true for Israel, whose effectiveness as a regional power has always been seriously handicapped by its lack of access to the Persian Gulf region. The overarching US military presence helps Israel politically to consolidate its Yemeni chapter. Without doubt, Petraeus is moving on Yemen in tandem with Israel (and Britain). But the “pro-West” Arab states with their rentier mentality have no choice except to remain as mute spectators on the sidelines.

Some among them may actually acquiesce with the Israeli security presence in the region as a safer bet than the spread of the dangerous ideas of Shi’ite empowerment emanating out of Iran, Iraq and Hezbollah. Also, at some stage, Israeli intelligence will begin to infiltrate the extremist Sunni outfits in Yemen, which are commonly known as affiliates of al-Qaeda. That is, if it hasn’t done that already. Any such link makes Israel an invaluable ally for the US in its fight against al-Qaeda. In sum, infinite possibilities exist in the paradigm that is taking shape in the Muslim world abutting into the strategic Persian Gulf.

It’s all about China

Most important, however, for US global strategies will be the massive gain of control of the port of Aden in Yemen. Britain can vouchsafe that Aden is the gateway to Asia. Control of Aden and the Malacca Strait will put the US in an unassailable position in the “great game” of the Indian Ocean. The sea lanes of the Indian Ocean are literally the jugular veins of China’s economy. By controlling them, Washington sends a strong message to Beijing that any notions by the latter that the US is a declining power in Asia would be nothing more than an extravagant indulgence in fantasy.

In the Indian Ocean region, China is increasingly coming under pressure. India is a natural ally of the US in the Indian Ocean region. Both disfavor any significant Chinese naval presence. India is mediating a rapprochement between Washington and Colombo that would help roll back Chinese influence in Sri Lanka. The US has taken a u-turn in its Myanmar policy and is engaging the regime there with the primary intent of eroding China’s influence with the military rulers. The Chinese strategy aimed at strengthening influence in Sri Lanka and Myanmar so as to open a new transportation route towards the Middle East, the Persian Gulf and Africa, where it has begun contesting traditional Western economic dominance.

China is keen to whittle down its dependence on the Malacca Strait for its commerce with Europe and West Asia. The US, on the contrary, is determined that China remains vulnerable to the choke point between Indonesia and Malaysia.

An engrossing struggle is breaking out. The US is unhappy with China’s efforts to reach the warm waters of the Persian Gulf through the Central Asian region and Pakistan. Slowly but steadily, Washington is tightening the noose around the neck of the Pakistani elites – civilian and military – and forcing them to make a strategic choice between the US and China. This will put those elites in an unenviable dilemma. Like their Indian counterparts, they are inherently “pro-Western” (even when they are “anti-American”) and if the Chinese connection is important for Islamabad, that is primarily because it balances perceived Indian hegemony.

The existential questions with which the Pakistani elites are grappling are apparent. They are seeking answers from Obama. Can Obama maintain a balanced relationship vis-a-vis Pakistan and India? Or, will Obama lapse back to the George W Bush era strategy of building up India as the pre-eminent power in the Indian Ocean under whose shadow Pakistan will have to learn to live?

US-India-Israel axis

On the other hand, the Indian elites are in no compromising mood. Delhi was on a roll during the Bush days. Now, after the initial misgivings about Obama’s political philosophy, Delhi is concluding that he is all but a clone of his illustrious predecessor as regards the broad contours of the US’s global strategy – of which containment of China is a core template.

The comfort level is palpably rising in Delhi with regard to the Obama presidency. Delhi takes the surge of the Israeli lobby in Washington as the litmus test for the Obama presidency. The surge suits Delhi, since the Jewish lobby was always a helpful ally in cultivating influence in the US Congress, media and the rabble-rousing think-tankers as well as successive administrations. And all this is happening at a time when the India-Israel security relationship is gaining greater momentum.

United States Defense Secretary Robert Gates is due to visit Delhi in the coming days. The Obama administration is reportedly adopting an increasingly accommodative attitude toward India’s longstanding quest for “dual-use” technology from the US. If so, a massive avenue of military cooperation is about to open between the two countries, which will make India a serious challenger to China’s growing military prowess. It is a win-win situation as the great Indian arms bazaar offers highly lucrative business for American companies.

Clearly, a cozy three-way US-Israel-India alliance provides the underpinning for all the maneuvering that is going on. It will have significance for the security of the Indian Ocean, the Persian Gulf and the Arabian Peninsula. Last year, India formalized a naval presence in Oman.

All-in-all, terrorism experts are counting the trees and missing the wood when they analyze the US foray into Yemen in the limited terms of hunting down al-Qaeda. The hard reality is that Obama, whose main plank used to be “change”, has careened away and increasingly defaults to the global strategies of the Bush era. The freshness of the Obama magic is dissipating. Traces of the “revisionism” in his foreign policy orientation are beginning to surface. We can see them already with regard to Iran, Afghanistan, the Middle East and the Israel-Palestine problem, Central Asia and towards China and Russia.

Arguably, this sort of “return of the native” by Obama was inevitable. For one thing, he is but a creature of his circumstances. As someone put it brilliantly, Obama’s presidency is like driving a train rather than a car: a train cannot be “steered”, the driver can at best set its speed, but ultimately, it must run on its tracks.

Besides, history has no instances of a declining world power meekly accepting its destiny and walking into the sunset. The US cannot give up on its global dominance without putting up a real fight. And the reality of all such momentous struggles is that they cannot be fought piece-meal. You cannot fight China without occupying Yemen.

 

Russia, China, Iran redraw energy map

Asia Times
January 9, 2010

The inauguration of the Dauletabad-Sarakhs-Khangiran pipeline on Wednesday connecting Iran’s northern Caspian region with Turkmenistan’s vast gas field may go unnoticed amid the Western media cacophony that it is “apocalypse now” for the Islamic regime in Tehran.

The event sends strong messages for regional security. Within the space of three weeks, Turkmenistan has committed its entire gas exports to China, Russia and Iran. It has no urgent need of the pipelines that the United States and the European Union have been advancing. Are we hearing the faint notes of a Russia-China-Iran symphony?

The 182-kilometer Turkmen-Iranian pipeline starts modestly with the pumping of 8 billion cubic meters (bcm) of Turkmen gas. But its annual capacity is 20bcm, and that would meet the energy requirements of Iran’s Caspian region and enable Tehran to free its own gas production in the southern fields for export. The mutual interest is perfect: Ashgabat gets an assured market next door; northern Iran can consume without fear of winter shortages; Tehran can generate more surplus for exports; Turkmenistan can seek transportation routes to the world market via Iran; and Iran can aspire to take advantage of its excellent geographical location as a hub for the Turkmen exports.

We are witnessing a new pattern of energy cooperation at the regional level that dispenses with Big Oil. Russia traditionally takes the lead. China and Iran follow the example. Russia, Iran and Turkmenistan hold respectively the world’s largest, second-largest and fourth-largest gas reserves. And China will be consumer par excellence in this century. The matter is of profound consequence to the US global strategy.

Read Full Article Here

Afghanistan: only the first move in the grand chess game for control of Central Asian resources

 



Yemen tells U.S. soldiers to keep out

Yemen tells U.S. soldiers to keep out

The Independent
January 8, 2010

Yemen insisted yesterday that it could handle its own mounting security challenges without any direct foreign intervention, pointedly warning Washington to learn the lessons from Iraq and Afghanistan.

While welcoming US intelligence and technological co-operation, the Deputy Prime Minister for Defence and Security, Rashad al-Alimi, told a crowded news conference in the capital, Sana’a, that the government did not want foreign troops on its soil.

That message was reinforced by Foreign Minister Abukar al-Qirbi, who told CNN that fighting militants was “the priority and the responsibility of our security forces and the army”.

On the possibility of direct US military intervention, he said: “No, I don’t think we will accept that. I think the US as well have learned from Afghanistan and Iraq and other places that direct intervention can be self-defeating.”

Read Full Article Here

‘US intervention in Yemen could strengthen al-Qaeda’

Saudi warplanes hit N Yemen districts again

 



Afghan war kills three children a day: report

Afghan war kills three children a day: report

AFP
January 8, 2010

KABUL — Children are the biggest victims of the war in Afghanistan, with more than 1,050 people under 18 years old killed last year alone, according to an Afghan human rights watchdog.

Taliban-linked militants caused around 64 percent of all violent child deaths last year, the Afghanistan Rights Monitor (ARM) said in a report.

Children were also press-ganged, sexually exploited, deprived of health and education, and illegally detained by all sides in a war that is dragging into its ninth year since the US-led invasion toppled the Taliban regime.

“At least three children were killed in war-related incidents every day in 2009 and many others suffered in diverse but mostly unreported ways,” ARM director Ajmal Samadi said.

Read Full Article Here

 



U.S. Casualties in Afghanistan could be 500 a month

US forces in Afghanistan ‘should expect up to 500 casualties a month’

Times Online
January 7, 2010

US forces in Afghanistan should brace themselves for up to 500 casualties a month this year, a senior retired American general has warned.

The forecast comes from General Barry McCaffrey, formerly the most decorated general in the US Army, who has conducted field assessments of the US military performance in Afghanistan at the request of the US military since 2003.

His assessment projects that US forces can expect to lose between 300 and 500 soldiers a month, either killed or wounded, this year, rising to a peak during the summer months. US military casualties during 2009 were 305 killed and 2,102 injured up to December 20. More than half of those injured have not been able to return to service.

Casualties in Afghanistan tend to peak during the summer “fighting season” between June and October and to dip, particularly in mountainous areas, during the winter.

The anticipated increase would produce around 3,000 American casualties this year, and a total for Western forces in Afghanistan of around 5,000 killed and wounded — the equivalent of seven infantry battalions.

British forces suffered 108 deaths last year, and 464 wounded in action.

General McCaffrey is an adjunct professor at the US Military Academy at West Point. While his assessment is not a government document, it was conducted at the request of General David Petraeus, the commander of US Central Command, and General Stanley McChrystal, the commander of Nato forces in Afghanistan, and included comprehensive access to senior Western military officials and diplomats, including British officials.

He suggests that the Taleban deserve considerable respect for their tenacity and military capability. “We must guard against arrogance, and US and allied ground combat forces”, he warns, face “very clever fighters” with “ferocious combat capabilities”.

He cites in particular two occasions when small American bases were all but overrun by “battalion-size” Taleban units during 2009: “Only the incredible small unit leadership, fighting skill, and valour of these two small US army units — which suffered very high casualties at [Combat Outpost] Wanat and COP Keating — prevented humiliating defeat.”

Despite the stated desire of the Obama Administration to achieve a discernible improvement in Afghanistan within 18 months, and to begin a military drawdown after that time, General McCaffrey concludes: “We are unlikely to achieve our political and military goals in 18 months. This will inevitably become a three to ten-year strategy to build a viable Afghan state with their own security force that can allow us to withdraw.

“It may well cost us an additional $300 billion, and we are likely to suffer thousands more US casualties.”

A promised “US civilian surge” will not materialise, he believes: “Afghanistan over the next two to three years will be simply too dangerous for most civil agencies.”

He adds that the war can be expected to cost the US Government more than $9 billion (£5.6 billion) a month during the summer of 2010. The cost of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan is currently $377 million a day, compared with a constant-dollar equivalent of $622 million a day for the Second World War.

However, his assessment is that the mission’s goals remain possible: “We can achieve our strategic purpose with determined leadership and American treasure and blood.

“We now have the most effective and courageous military forces in our nation’s history committed to this campaign … Our focus must now not be on an exit strategy — but effective execution of the political, economic and military measures required to achieve our purpose.”

Serial Catastrophes in Afghanistan threaten Obama Policy

 



Ron Paul: Obama, Bush and Clinton have the same foreign policy

Ron Paul: Obama, Bush and Clinton have the same foreign policy

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CnJt_h44-00

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9AvSQuqQb5c

 



Pakistan: Over 700 Civilians Killed in US Drone Strikes

Pakistan: Over 700 Civilians Killed in US Drone Strikes

Dawn News
January 3, 2009

PESHAWAR: Of the 44 predator strikes carried out by US drones in the tribal areas of Pakistan over the past 12 months, only five were able to hit their actual targets, killing five key Al-Qaeda and Taliban leaders, but at the cost of over 700 innocent civilians.

According to the statistics compiled by Pakistani authorities, the Afghanistan-based US drones killed 708 people in 44 predator attacks targeting the tribal areas between January 1 and December 31, 2009.

For each Al Qaeda and Taliban terrorist killed by US drones, 140 innocent Pakistanis also had to die. Over 90 per cent of those killed in the deadly missile strikes were civilians, claim authorities.

The success percentage for the drone hits during 2009 was hardly 11 per cent. On average, 58 civilians were killed in these attacks every month, 12 persons every week and almost two people every day. Most of the attacks were carried out on the basis of human intelligence, reportedly provided by the Pakistani and Afghan tribesmen, who are spying for the US-led allied forces in Afghanistan.

Of the five successful predator attacks carried out in 2009, the first one came on January 1, which reportedly killed two senior al-Qaeda leaders – Usama al-Kin and Sheikh Ahmed Salim – both wanted by the American Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI). Kin was the chief operational commander of Al-Qaeda in Pakistan and had replaced Abu Faraj Al Libi after his arrest in 2004.

The second successful drone attack was conducted on August 5 in South Waziristan that killed the most wanted fugitive chief of the Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan Baitullah Mehsud along with his wife.

The US State Department had announces a $5million head money for information leading to Baitullah, making him the only Pakistani fugitive with the head money separately announced by Islamabad and Washington.

 



Flight 253 Event a Pretext For Yemen War

Obama Blames al-Qaeda for Christmas False Flag, Sets Stage for Yemen Attack

Kurt Nimmo
Prison Planet.com
January 3, 2010

On Saturday, Obama said the Christmas day non-attack over Detroit was the work of al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula, the latest incarnation of the perennial boogieman used by government to frighten people into accepting foreign invasions and occupations and an ever-growing police state grid at home.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zxDXiZbPpjM

“We know that [Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab] traveled to Yemen, a country grappling with crushing poverty and deadly insurgencies. It appears that he joined an affiliate of al Qaeda, and that this group — Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula — trained him, equipped him with those explosives and directed him to attack that plane headed for America,” Obama said in his address to the nation.

Nassir al-Wahishi is the new Osama bin Laden. He was appointed by Ayman al-Zawahiri to run AQAP in Yemen. Al-Zawahiri is a documented intelligence asset. His brother Zaiman al-Zawahiri fought for the CIA in Kosovo and ran terrorist camps under NATO protection in the U.S. zone in Kosovo.

Ayman, according to January 2000 U.S. Congressional testimony, was granted U.S. residence by the Immigration and Naturalization Service. This is almost impossible for many legitimate immigrants to obtain but is often granted to CIA assets that need to get in and out of the country as they perform their assignments.

Ayman al-Zawahiri founded the Egyptian Islamic Jihad with the help of the Muslim Brotherhood, an organization long ago penterated and comprmised by British intelligence. The CIA funneled support to the Muslim Brotherhood in an effort to overthrow Egyptian president Gamal Abddul Nasser, considered the father of Arab nationalism.

“The real Muslim Brothers are those whose hands are never dirtied with the business of killing and burning,” Robert Dreyfuss summarized in 1980. “They are the secretive bankers and financiers who stand behind the curtain, the members of the old Arab, Turkish, or Persian families whose genealogy places them in the oligarchical elite, with smooth business and intelligence associations to the European black nobility (Bilderberg) and, especially, to the British oligarchy.”

The Islamist movement and in particular the violent Jihadist movement are creations of the elite and are used for political purposes contrary to those declared by their wild-eyed adherents who are generally patsies and useful idiots.

Al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula is but the latest assemblage of fanatics to be used by the elite to further their agenda of global domination and the mass murder and suffering it requires.

If Nassir al-Wahishi is connected to Ayman al-Zawahiri, it is a pretty safe bet to say he is a tool of the CIA as well. Nassir al-Wahishi also had a close relationship to the Big Kahuna of CIA operatives, the late Osama bin Laden.

“This is not the first time this group has targeted us,” Obama continued in his weekend address. “In recent years, they have bombed Yemeni government facilities and Western hotels, restaurants and embassies — including our embassy in 2008, killing one American. So, as president, I’ve made it a priority to strengthen our partnership with the Yemeni government-training and equipping their security forces, sharing intelligence and working with them to strike al-Qaeda terrorists.”

Obama’s statement came one day after Britain’s PM Gordon Brown called an “emergency summit” on “extremism” in Yemen. “Gordon Brown has invited key international partners to a high-level meeting in order to discuss how best to counter radicalization in Yemen,” a statement issued by Downing Street announced. “The prime minister will host the event on 28 January in London.”

“Yemen’s problems are many, and some are already spreading beyond its borders,” the establishment declares from the pages of The Washington Post. “Security and stability are deteriorating. The population is growing rapidly. The economy is collapsing. There are few good options today; things will look worse tomorrow. Immediate and sustained international attention is needed to at least lessen the impact of some problems.”

“While military and counterterrorism operations are critical, long-term development assistance is also necessary.”

Iranian Press TV comments: “Concerns are growing that the same fate as those of Afghanistan and Iraq, suffering violence despite years of foreign military presence, might await Yemen’s Muslim nation.”

 

Obama Administration Prepares Public Opinion for Attack on Yemen

globalresearch.ca
January 3, 2010

Five days after the unsuccessful attempt by a Nigerian student to set off a bomb aboard a Detroit-bound passenger jet, US military and intelligence officials are said to be preparing expanded military action against targets in Yemen, the Arab country where the student allegedly received terrorist training and was equipped with an explosive device.

A series of US media reports suggest that new US-backed military attacks inside Yemen are imminent. Citing “two senior US officials,” CNN reported: “The US and Yemen are now looking at fresh targets for a potential retaliation strike.”

The network said the officials “both stressed the effort is aimed at being ready with options for the White House if President Obama orders a retaliatory strike.” CNN continued: “The effort is to see whether targets can be specifically linked to the airliner incident and its planning. US special operations forces and intelligence agencies, and their Yemeni counterparts, are working to identify potential Al Qaeda targets in Yemen, one of the officials said.”

The network said the Obama administration and the long-time Yemeni dictator, Field Marshal Ali Abdullah Saleh, had reached an agreement to allow the US to fly cruise missiles, fighter jets and armed drones, used for remote-control assassinations, in Yemeni airspace. Talks were still ongoing on whether Saleh will give permission for the entry of US helicopter-borne Special Forces.

The report comes after a series of statements by top administration officials, including Obama himself, pledging that “all elements of US power” will be used in response to the failed attack on Northwest Flight 253. The White House has been under heavy fire from its Republican opponents over the evident security failure, and a military action would serve to divert public attention from the ongoing revelations of how the CIA and other US agencies ignored warnings about the impending attack.

Yemen’s foreign minister, Abu Bakr al Qirbi, told the BBC that his country was seeking stepped up military aid, presumably as part of a package deal—in effect, a bribe for allowing the country’s territory to be turned into a battlefield for US commandos.

The Wall Street Journal reported that the Obama administration was discussing nearly tripling its military and counterterrorism aid to Yemen in the coming year. US aid jumped from $4.6 million in 2006 to $67 million this year, and would rise to as much as $190 million in 2010, according to “a senior military official.

Reuters, citing unnamed “defense and counterterrorism officials,” reported that “the Obama administration was exploring ways to accelerate and expand US assistance to Yemeni forces to root out the Al Qaeda leadership in the country, while keeping the role of the US military and intelligence agencies as behind the scenes as possible.”

The news agency reported a clash between Yemeni security forces and Al Qaeda fighters in the western Hudaydah province, around the town of Deir Jaber.

The Los Angeles Times cited a Yemeni terrorism expert as the source of an estimate that Al Qaeda has “as many as 2,000 militants and sympathizers exploiting the country’s economic and political chaos to create a base for jihad at the edge of the Persian Gulf.” This is ten times more than other media estimates of the number of such militants in Yemen, and 20 times the number of Al Qaeda forces said by US officials to be in Afghanistan now.

The Times report is part of an effort by the US media to portray Yemen as a lawless hotbed of terrorism and a major threat to the United States, in order to justify in advance an American attack, or even a full-scale invasion.

It was followed by an even more apocalyptic comment by “terrorism expert” Steven Emerson, interviewed Wednesday morning on CBS’ “Early Show.” He said that while the Pakistan-Afghanistan border was still “number one” for terrorist activity, the area surrounding the Gulf of Aden, including Yemen and Somalia, was “fast coming up the ladder.”

    “Yemen possibly could surpass Pakistan in the next year, given the terrorist trajectory for providing a haven for Al Qaeda,” he claimed. In light of the fact that the Obama administration is mobilizing 100,000 American troops as well as hundreds of warplanes and drones for combat along the Afghanistan-Pakistan border, such a comparison is extremely ominous.

    Emerson took particular note of “literally scores of American Muslim students studying and being trained in Yemen to this day…. There’s a pool of potential terrorists out there that have Western passports that can board planes without visas.”

The clear goal of such far-fetched claims is to create a pogrom atmosphere directed against all young American Muslims, particularly those of Arab or East African origin.

These comments were made one day after press reports of an alleged abortive attempt by a Somali man equipped with explosive powder and a syringe to board a passenger jet in Mogadishu, the capital city. This is the same modus operandi as that of the Nigerian man, Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab, aboard Northwest Flight 253 on Christmas Day. The Somali was arrested by African peacekeeping troops on November 13 and never succeeded in getting on the plane.

The Washington Post, the leading newspaper in the US capital, published an editorial Wednesday noting that in the wake of the Christmas Day bombing attempt, allegedly originating in Yemen, “some are asking whether the United States should launch a military offensive in that impoverished Arabian nation.” The editorial continued: “The answer, of course, is that it already has.”

Citing a series of raids conducted by Yemeni and US forces, the Post praised the Obama administration for having “significantly stepped up US counterterrorism operations in Yemen,” including the dispatch of CIA and Special Forces personnel. But it warned: “Still, Yemen’s steady slide toward failed-state status in recent years means that it, like nearby Somalia, will probably demand concerted and multifaceted US engagement for years to come. More than Special Forces and missile strikes are needed.”

While declaring that “US ground troops are not needed, for now, in Yemen or Somalia,” the newspaper suggested that such forces may well be required in the future. It declared, “in those countries, as in Afghanistan, a strategy limited to counterterrorism will not eliminate the threat.”

Once again, as in the case of Afghanistan and Iraq, American imperialism is preparing a military bloodbath in an impoverished country, using a terrorist attack—in this case a failed attempt—as the pretext. According to reports by the UN and Yemeni government statistics, some 35 percent of the adult population of the country is unemployed. Yemen is the poorest of the Arab countries, has exhausted its very limited oil export capacity, and now faces severe water shortages.

But Yemen possesses, like Afghanistan and Iraq, a highly strategic geographic location, adjacent to Saudi Arabia, the world’s largest oil exporter, and the Red Sea, controlling access to the Suez Canal. Yemen also borders on the Gulf of Aden, the shipping route for much of the oil leaving the Persian Gulf.

US military forces are already deployed across the strait of Bab el Mandeb in Djibouti, the former French Somaliland, which remains a virtual French colony. Djibouti hosts thousands of French and US troops who could quickly move into Yemen if so ordered by Paris and Washington. A large US and NATO war fleet patrols shipping lanes through the Gulf of Aden and south along the Indian Ocean coast of Somalia.

 

Summary of Facts: Flight 253 Event

Examiner
January 2, 2009

The US government who lied for wars in other resource-rich countries are lying about what happened on Delta Flight 253 with an alleged underwear/crotch bomber. Below is a summary of facts reported at this time, along with a 4-minute news interview from Webster Tarpley, followed by an extensive interview of Mr. Tarpley by Alex Jones.:

Before the flight to the US:

    * Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab traveled to Yemen to meet with “terrorists.” However, his mother also lives in Yemen, which could also explain the visit.

    * The alleged terrorists in Yemen had been in Guantanamo Prison. They were released without trial by the Bush Administration even though they were reported as among the most dangerous detainees.

    * The government of Yemen reports that Islamic terrorists there have been arrested who have proven ties to Israeli intelligence.

    * Abdulmutallab’s father, though we are told is a retired “Nigerian banker,” ran their defense industry in close cooperation with Israeli Intelligence (Mossad).

    * Abdulmutallab’s father warned US embassy officials of his son’s dangerous behavior; this is corroborated with other US intelligence of warning.

    * Abdulmutallab’s visa to the US was never withdrawn, though he was on a “terrorist watchlist.” This would make his trip impossible unless protocol was ignored.

    * Flying from Nigeria, Abdulmutallab entered the Netherlands without passing through customs; impossible to do without assistance from an intelligence agency.

    * At the Amsterdam airport, Abdulmutallab was assisted by a man appearing to be Indian, who claimed Abdulmutallab was a Sudanese refugee with no passport (he would not have been allowed to enter the EU without a passport through customs). This man and whoever authorized boarding without a passport are huge stories we haven’t heard. Where is the airport videos of this?

    * Airport security in Amsterdam is contracted to an Israeli company with the most sophisticated technologies who had developed the concept of security profiling.

During the flight to the US:

    * Witnesses reported a man standing ten rows behind Abdulmutallab stand and use his camcorder to film the incident before it began. This important testimony was not pursued to discover the identity and role of this seemingly complicit person.

    * Witnesses report Abdulmutallab was oddly vacant and calm; typical of a programmed

    “Manchurian Candidate.” This might explain the behavior of the person filming: a “handler” who gave the code for Abdulmutallab to perform an act. Manchurian Candidates are now acknowledged historical fact. Research this if you are unfamiliar with the disclosed history.

After the flight:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hq2gz0Zr0jQ

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Cv8sSHphscg

 



Bomber who killed 7 CIA agents was ‘potential informant’

Bomber who killed 7 CIA agents was ‘potential informant’

BBC News
January 1, 2010

The suicide bomber who killed seven CIA agents in Afghanistan had been courted by the US as a possible informant, US intelligence sources have said.

They said he had not undergone the usual full body search before entering the base in Khost province, and so was able to smuggle in an explosive belt.

The attack was the worst against US intelligence officials since the US embassy in Beirut was bombed in 1983.

US President Barack Obama has praised the work of those killed in a letter.

Paying tribute to the fallen, Mr Obama said those killed were “part of a long line of patriots who have made great sacrifices for their fellow citizens, and for our way of life”.

He told CIA employees in a letter that the victims had “taken great risks to protect our country” and that their sacrifices had “sometimes been unknown to your fellow citizens, your friends, and even your families”.

Claim questioned

From the moment the bomb was detonated inside the base on Wednesday, says the BBC’s Peter Greste in Kabul, questions were raised about how he managed to pass through security.

But now intelligence sources familiar with the investigation have said that CIA agents working from Forward Operating Base Chapman had been attempting to recruit the man as a potential informant.

A US official, and former CIA employee, said such people were often not required to go through full security checks in order to help gain their trust.

“When you’re trying to build a rapport and literally ask them to risk [their lives] for you, you’ve got a lot to do to build their trust,” he told the Associated Press news agency.

The Taliban have said one of their members carried out the attack.

Spokesman Zabiullah Mujahid told the BBC the Khost bomber was wearing an army uniform when he managed to breach security at the base, detonating his explosives belt in the gym.

However, this claim was denied by the Afghan defence ministry.

“This is the Taliban talking and nothing the Taliban says should be believed,” said ministry spokesman Zahir Azimi.

Neither the names of the CIA officials killed nor the details of their work have been released because of the sensitivity of US operations, the agency said.

But the head of the base – who was reported to be a mother of three – was said to be among the dead.

As chief, she would have led intelligence-gathering operations in Khost, a hotbed of Taliban activity due to its proximity to Pakistan’s lawless tribal region.

‘Great sacrifice’

CIA Director Leon Panetta said six other agents had been injured in the attack.

He said the dead and injured had been “far from home and close to the enemy”.

“We owe them our deepest gratitude, and we pledge to them and their families that we will never cease fighting for the cause to which they dedicated their lives – a safer America,” he said.

The flags at the CIA headquarters in Langley, Virginia, are being flown at half-mast in honour of the dead.

Forward Operating Base Chapman, a former Soviet military base, is used not only by the CIA but also by provincial reconstruction teams, which include both soldiers and civilians.

The airfield is reportedly used for US drone attacks on suspected militants in neighbouring Pakistan.

A total of 90 CIA employees have been honoured for their deaths in the agency’s service since its inception in 1947, according to the Washington Post newspaper.

 



2010 could be a year that sparks unrest

2010 could be a year that sparks unrest

Economist.com
December 31, 2009

IF THE world appears to have escaped relatively unscathed by social unrest in 2009, despite suffering the worst recession since the 1930s, it might just prove the lull before the storm. Despite a tentative global recovery, for many people around the world economic and social conditions will continue to deteriorate in 2010. An estimated 60m people worldwide will lose their jobs. Poverty rates will continue to rise, with 200m people at risk of joining the ranks of those living on less than $2 a day. But poverty alone does not spark unrest—exaggerated income inequalities, poor governance, lack of social provision and ethnic tensions are all elements of the brew that foments unrest.

 



U.S. Troops Accused of Executing 8 Afghan Children

U.S. Troops Accused of Executing 10 Afghan Civilians During Night Raid


Afghans burn Obama effigy over civilian deaths

The Times
December 30, 2009

Afghan investigators today accused US-led troops of dragging ten civilians from their beds and shooting them dead during a night raid.

Officials said that eight children and teenagers were among the dead and all but one of the victims were from the same family.

The reports led to angry protests in Kabul and Jalalabad, with children as young as 10 chanting “Death to America” and demanding foreign forces leave Afghanistan.

President Karzai sent a team of investigators to Narang district, in Kunar province, after reports emerged of a massacre. “The delegation concluded that a unit of international forces descended from a plane on Sunday night into Ghazi Khan village in Narang district of the eastern province of Kunar and took ten people from three homes, eight of them school students in grades six, nine and 10, one of them a guest, the rest from the same family, and shot them dead,” a statement on President Karzai’s website said.

Asked if the people were shot outside their homes, the President’s spokesman Waheed Omar said: “That is our understanding.”

Local elders confirmed that ten people were killed, but their accounts of raid differed.

“Three of the children were killed in their bedroom,” said a local elder Jan Mohammed. “The other five had their hands bound, then they were killed.”

According to the presidential statement, local US forces were “unaware of the incident”.

Investigators spoke to the headmaster of the local school who confirmed that all the children – aged 11 to 17 – were his students.

A spokesman for the US-led International Security Assistance Force (Isaf) was not immediately available for comment on the allegations.

A senior Western military official said that US Special Forces had been conducting operations in the area, separately from Isaf.

Military officials insisted the dead were all part of a cell responsible for manufacturing improvised explosive devices (IEDs).

“This was a joint operation that was conducted against an IED cell that Afghan and US officials had been developing information against for some time,” a senior Nato source said.

 



Are America’s Mercenary Armies Really Drug Cartels?

Are America’s Mercenary Armies Really Drug Cartels?

Gordon Duff
December 29, 2009

News out of Afghanistan, Pakistan and India reports massive corruption at the highest levels of government, corruption that could only be financed with drug money. In Afghanistan, the president’s brother is known to be one of the biggest drug runners in the world.

In Pakistan, President Zardani is found with 60 million in a Swiss Bank and his Interior Minister is suspected of ties to American groups involved in paramilitary operations, totally illegal that could involve nothing but drugs, there is no other possibility.

Testimony in the US that our government has used “rendition” flights to transport massive amounts of narcotics to Western Europe and the United States has been taken in sworn deposition.

American mercenaries in Pakistan are hundreds of miles away from areas believed to be hiding terrorists, involved in “operations” that can’t have anything whatsoever to do with any CIA contract. These mercenaries aren’t in Quetta, Waziristan or FATA supporting our troops, they are in Karachi and Islamabad playing with police and government officials and living the life of the fatted calf.

The accusations made are that Americans in partnership with corrupt officials, perhaps in all 3 countries, Afghanistan, Pakistan and India, are involved in assassinations, “unknown” criminal activities and are functioning like criminal gangs.

There is no oil. There is nothing to draw people into the area other than one product, one that nobody is talking about. Drugs.

The US got involved in massive drug operations, importation, processing and distribution during the Reagan years, supposedly to finance covert CIA operations involving death squads tasked with murdering Sandinista “infrastructure” in Nicaragua.

The deal involved Israel, Iran and the Colombian cartel. Saddam was even involved. In the end, President Reagan was put on the stand only to remember little or nothing of his tenure in office. Lt. Col. Oliver North was convicted as was Secretary of Defense Weinberger and many others. Pardons and “other methods” were used to keep the guilty out of jail.

Now we find what was supposed to be a CIA operation with one company only, Xe, operations that were meant to hunt a couple of terrorist/Taliban leaders in and around Quetta, a city of 1 million in remote Baluchistan has turned into a honeycomb of operations involving millions of dollars and personnel of all kinds, perhaps even ranking diplomats and high government officials, the highest.

The cover of hunting terrorists in remote areas with hundreds of armed men in cities on the other side of the country, cities filled with 5 star hotels, country clubs, polo, cricket and fine restaurants is not really cover, even by CIA standards.

The reports, bribes, actions that look and smell like drug gangs at work, tell a story that nobody wants to talk about.

With 50 billion dollars of opium from Afghanistan alone and crops in Pakistan and India also, managing the world’s heroin supply is, by my estimation, how all of this “muscle” is staying busy. When you see a black van full of armed men, is there a sign somewhere saying:

“We are counter terrorists working for the Central Intelligence Agency and we are only in town here, hundreds of miles from the nearest terrorist because we need a hot shower and to get a noise in the transmission checked out.”

Everyone can choose to believe what they want. It’s time we stopped lying. Its about drugs, always has been, always will, drugs and money. It buys men, it buys guns and it can buy governments and has, as anyone with eyes can see.

 



Man Videotaped Entire Incident on Flight 253

Man Videotaped Entire Incident on Flight 253

Kurt Nimmo
Prison Planet.com
December 28, 2009

For ABC News and the corporate media, it is a foregone conclusion. The Christmas underwear bomber is al-Qaeda.

“American officials have cause to worry there may be more al Qaeda-trained young men in Yemen planning to bring down American jets,” report Brian Ross and Richard Esposito. “Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab, charged with the attempted Christmas Day bombing of Northwest Airlines flight 253, told FBI agents there were more just like him in Yemen who would strike soon.”

And then there is the supposed tape released four days before the attempted underwear bombing. It shows what ABC describes as “the leader of al Qaeda in Yemen” who says he will kill Americans. “We are carrying a bomb to hit the enemies of God.”

“Yemen has become a principal al Qaeda training ground and the accused suicide bomber told the FBI he was trained for more than a month in Yemen, given 80 grams of a high explosive cleverly sewn into his underpants, undetected by standard security screening.”

On Sunday, the neocon Joe Lieberman said the U.S. needs to bomb Yemen and pronto. “Iraq was yesterday’s war, Afghanistan is today’s war. If we don’t act preemptively, Yemen will be tomorrow’s war,” the “hawkish” (neocon) senator from Connecticut told Fox News.

Lieberman, who helms the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee, said Yemen is the new home of al-Qaeda. A script on Yemen and al-Qaeda is now being uniformly followed by the corporate media.

Meanwhile, more suspicious information about the underwear bombing has surfaced. An eye witness told the news talk radio station 620 WTMJ in Milwaukee that a man on the flight had videotaped the entire flight.

Patricia “Scotty” Keepman and her daughter witnessed the alleged botched bombing. Keepman’s “daughter said that ahead of them was a man who videotaped the entire flight, including the attempted detonation.”

“He sat up and videotaped the entire thing, very calmly,” said Patricia. “We do know that the FBI is looking for him intensely. Since then, we’ve heard nothing about it.”

On Saturday it was reported that a “sharp-dressed man” had escorted Umar Farouk Abdul Mutallab when he boarded Northwest Airlines Flight 253 in Amsterdam. Mutallab was allowed on the plane without a passport. It was later reported that Mutallab seemed to be in a trance.

The alleged videotaping of the underwear bomber and his fudged attack is another oddity that the corporate media should zoom in on. Unfortunately, we no longer have a functioning investigative media in this country.

Instead we will hear endless pabulum about a resurgent al-Qaeda and murderous idiocy from neocons like Joe Lieberman who are screaming for another small and defenseless country to be bombed and more innocents slaughtered as the U.S. chases a phantom terror group created by the CIA.

Terrorist Was Escorted on Flight 253 by Wealthy-Looking Indian Man

Terrorist Allowed on Plane Without a Passport AND He Was on a Terrorist Database

 



Hillary: We’ll Be In Afghanistan for 50 or 60 Years

Hillary: We’ll Be In Afghanistan for 50 or 60 Years

Washington’s Blog
December 24, 2009

On December 1st, President Obama talked about withdrawing U.S. troops from Afghanistan within 18 months.

Everyone now knows that there is no firm withdrawal date from Afghanistan. See this and this.

But in testimony to the Senate Armed Services Committee on December 2nd, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton actually gave a much longer horizon for the presence of U.S. troops in America:

    Senator UDALL.— So, in an ideal world, we would get the job done militarily in the short term; in the medium and long term, we would have a presence in the region, economically, diplomacy, and politically.

    Secretary CLINTON. Well, as we have with so many other countries— obviously, we have troops in a limited number of countries around the world; some have been there for 50, 60 years, but we have long-term economic assistance and development programs in many others. And we think that’s a likely outcome in both Afghanistan and Pakistan, that we would be there with a long-term commitment.

Does this mean that U.S. troops will be in Afghanistan in 50 year?

On the surface, Clinton’s statement could be interpreted to mean that troops will leave sooner, but that America will have long-term economic assistance and development programs in Afghanistan for many decades to come.

However, U.S. charities working in Afghanistan report that they are subject to Pentagon sponsorship and control, and so the Afghani people view them as part of the U.S. military (which hampers their aid work).

Therefore, whether or not troops will remain in Afghanistan for a half century or more, the Afghani people and the rest of the world may consider it a permanent occupation.

Remember also that – while the U.S. government has promised to withdraw by December 31, 2011 from Iraq – the U.S. is building numerous permanent military bases in that country. (see this, this, this, this, this, this, this, this, this, and this). So talk is cheap.

 



Senate passes $636 billion defense spending bill

Senate passes $636 billion defense spending bill

WSWS
December 20, 2009

With overwhelming bipartisan support, the United States Senate passed a massive $636 billion military appropriations bill for 2010.

The bill includes some $128 billion for the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, but it does not fully fund the Obama administration’s escalation in Afghanistan, making likely further appropriations for war spending next year.

The deployment of 30,000 additional US troops is expected to cost $35 to $40 billion a year. On Wednesday, the Pentagon announced that the first of the new troops ordered to Afghanistan have begun to arrive.

All told, US military spending in 2010 will be close to $700 billion. If one adds the hundreds of billions of dollars in military-related spending included in the budgets of other departments, the total is as much as $1 trillion.

The overwhelming support for the bill, which passed 88-10 vote by the Senate on Saturday morning, demonstrates the bipartisan agreement in Washington on the war policy of the Obama administration. The vote comes shortly after President Barack Obama’s Nobel Prize speech, in which he outlined an expansion of US militarism.

Among the many separate provisions of the bill is the allocation of $80 million to acquire more unmanned Predator drones, currently being used to bomb both Afghanistan and Pakistan. The administration is planning on expanding these operations, including drone attacks against insurgents in the Pakistani province of Baluchistan that might target the large city of Quetta.

The Senate, which is currently discussing Obama’s health care overhaul, is expected to vote in support of the measure later this week.

Added on to the bill was a two-month extension of the anti-democratic Patriot Act, which also has bipartisan support. Other amendments to the bill temporarily extended jobless pay and health care assistance for the unemployed. These measures will be reexamined in February.

Meanwhile, states, cities and school districts throughout the country are imposing cuts to balance budget deficits that add up to a small fraction of the military spending bill.

School districts, in particular, are planning crippling cuts in preparation for the second half of the school year, beginning in January. Below are some examples of measures recently pushed through or planned:

• $550 million in K-12 education cuts in Michigan, leading school districts to lay off staff, close schools and eliminate programs.

• $300 million in cuts to K-12 education in Indiana. This amounts to an across-the-board 3-percent cut in the state’s education budget.

• $101.5 million less for public schools in South Carolina, adding to cuts of $85 million in September, along with $38.3 million in Medicaid cuts.

• $110 million in cuts to the 127,000-student Prince George County School District in Maryland, including 490 layoffs, an increase in class sizes, and teacher furloughs.

• $750 million withheld from local governments by New York Governor David Paterson, including funding cuts of between 10 percent and 30 percent for school districts.

• Plans for up to $470 million in cuts to public education in Los Angeles, California, including up to 8,000 layoffs.

The combined budget deficits for all 50 states this year was about $180 billion, less than one third of the military appropriation passed by the Senate.

 

Obama Approves $30 Billion in Military Aid to Israel Over Next Decade

Antiwar.com
December 18, 2009

As the single largest expense of the 2010 foreign aid budget, President Obama approved $2.775 billion in military aid to Israel, the first payment in a decade-long commitment that will reach at least $30 billion.

Last year, Israel’s military budget amounted to $13.3 billion, so the US funding is a significant portion of their overall expenditure. The US formerly provided both military and civilian aid, but it has since been folded entirely into military aid, at Israel’s request.

The money is not a blank check, however. The US requires that Israel spend at least 75% of the money given in military aid with US military contractors, effectively using the foreign aid budget to subsidize domestic weapon-makers.

In addition to military aid, the US also provides $3.148 billion in loan guarantees to Israel, part of a Treasury Department program aimed at keep Israel’s debt manageable. Ironically, though the US budget is spiraling out of control and America’s own debt continues to rise, there was no serious debate of reducing aid to Israel.

The budget also pledges $500 million in American aid to the Fatah Party’s Palestinian Authority. This aid is contingent on certain requirements, including that the group recognize Israel. This funding is distinct from any funding the CIA may give the Palestinian Authority’s security forces, which would be secret.

 



US drone strikes leave 17 dead in Pakistan

US drone strikes leave 17 dead in Pakistan

Press TV
December 17, 2009

Several US drones have fired at least 10 missiles into the Pakistani tribal areas, killing 17 people and injuring several others, Pakistani officials say.

Multiple drones launched an onslaught on several houses in North Waziristan on Thursday evening.

An intelligence official said 10 missiles fired from five US unmanned aircraft hit two compounds in Angoshga, some 25 kilometers west of the district’s main town of Miranshah.

“The attacks killed at least 15 militants and injured several more,” DPA quoted the official who spoke on condition of anonymity.

Sources say death toll is expected to rise as some of the injured were said to be in critical condition.

Earlier at around midday, two missiles slammed into a house allegedly used by militants.

Read Full Article Here

The War is in Pakistan Right Now

 



U.S. pays $57,077 a minute in Afghanistan

U.S. pays $57,077 a minute in Afghanistan

Asia Times
December 19, 2009

The sum of US$57,077.60. That’s what the United States is paying per minute. Keep that in mind – just for a minute or so.

After all, the surge is already on. By the end of December, the first 1,500 of 30,000 additional US troops will have landed in Afghanistan, a nation roughly the size of Texas, ranked by the United Nations as second-worst in the world in terms of human development.

Women and men from Camp Lejeune, North Carolina, will be among the first to head out. It takes an estimated $1 million to send each of them surging into Afghanistan for one year. So a 30,000-person surge will be at least $30 billion, which brings us to that $57,077.60. That’s how much it will cost the US taxpayer, for one minute of that surge.

By the way, add up the yearly salary of one US Marine Corps soldier from Camp Lejeune with four years of service, throw in his or her housing allowance, additional pay for dependents, and bonus pay for hazardous duty, imminent danger, and family separation, and you’ll still be many thousands of dollars short of that single minute’s sum.

Read Full Article Here

 

DOD: Obama’s Afghan Surge Will Rely Heavily On Private Contractors

TPM Muckraker
December 15, 2009

Private contractors will make up at least half of the total military workforce in Afghanistan going forward, according to Defense Department officials cited in a new congressional study.

As President Obama’s escalation of the war in Afghanistan unfolds, the number of contractors will likely jump by between 16,000 and 56,000, adding up to a total of 120,000-160,000, according to an updated study from the Congressional Research Service.

DOD officials who spoke with the study’s author said contractors would make up 50-55 percent of the total workforce — troops plus contractors — in the future. This would actually be a significant reduction from the last two years, when contractors have averaged 62 percent of the total.

As we’ve reported, many questions about the army of contractors, which outnumbers the size of the U.S. troop force, remain unanswered and underexamined. We don’t have up to date numbers on how much the United States spends on private contracts, and the DOD does not break down the services done by contractors in Afghanistan (it does for Iraq).

As of September 2009, contractors providing security, transportation, and logistical services numbered 104,100 in Afghanistan and 113,700 in Iraq, according to the military. Most of the contractors in Afghanistan are local nationals, according to the military.

Eikenberry assures Afghans U.S. will stay beyond 2011

 



Congress to probe ‘U.S. funding of Taliban’

Congress to probe ‘U.S. funding of Taliban’

Raw Story
December 17, 2009

A House committee has launched an investigation into claims that US military contractors in Afghanistan are paying the Taliban to guarantee the safety of their transportation convoys, an allegation that could mean American taxpayers are indirectly funding the insurgency that has killed more than 900 American soldiers so far.

“Serious allegations have been [made] that private security providers for US transportation contractors in Afghanistan are regularly paying local warlords and the Taliban for security,” said Rep. John Tierney (D-MA), chairman of the Subcommittee on National Security and Foreign Affairs. “After a preliminary inquiry, it has been determined these reports warrant a full-scale subcommittee investigation.”

Tierney said that if the allegations are proven to be true, “it would mean that the United States is unintentionally engaged in a vast protection racket and, as such, may be indirectly funding the very insurgents we are trying to fight.”

Read Full Article Here

Obama Allies Want New Tax To Pay For Cost Of Protecting Afghan Opium Fields, Bribing Taliban

U.S. Army paying the Taliban not to shoot at them