noworldsystem.com


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

 



National Guard Ad Revives Nazi Oath to Hitler

National Guard ad revives Nazi oath to Hitler: “Always place mission first,” not US Constitution

Examiner
January 4, 2010

In 2003, the US Army adapted the “Soldier’s Creed” to program soldiers to shift their Oath of Enlistment from “support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic,” to the heel-clicking, non-thinking, dictator-obeying, “I will always place the mission first.

This directly states that the FIRST duty of an American soldier is to achieve the mission dictated by military leadership, NOT the defense of the US Constitution. Brain-washing soldiers to place the mission first, that is, “just follow orders” given by der Fuehrer (“the leader” in German) rather than being responsible for obeying the Constitution and laws of war dramatizes the US shift into fascism.

This fascist propaganda is highlighted in the National Guard’s new 2-minute ad playing in movie theaters, shown below.

Nazi German soldiers had such an oath:

“I swear by God this sacred oath that I shall render unconditional obedience to Adolf Hitler, the Führer of the German Reich, supreme commander of the armed forces, and that I shall at all times be prepared, as a brave soldier, to give my life for this oath.”

Another way to say this: “I will always place the mission first, as dictated by the Commander-in-Chief, Adolf Hitler.”

The US Soldier’s Creed states the Army Values; its first component is “loyalty” to the US Constitution. But the creed and the new commercial favors “place the mission first” in its communication rather than “protect and defend the US Constitution.” And again, stating the “mission” dictated by the leader is first rather than the US Constitution is revealing.

I am an American Soldier.
I am a Warrior and a member of a team.
I serve the people of the United States, and live the Army Values.
I will always place the mission first.
I will never accept defeat.
I will never quit.
I will never leave a fallen comrade.
I am disciplined, physically and mentally tough, trained and proficient in my warrior tasks and drills.
I always maintain my arms, my equipment and myself.
I am an expert and I am a professional.
I stand ready to deploy, engage, and destroy, the enemies of the United States of America in close combat.
I am a guardian of freedom and the American way of life.
I am an American Soldier.

Another way to say this: “I will always place the mission first, as dictated by the Commander-in-Chief, President (blank).”

“I will always place the mission first, as dictated by the Commander-in-Chief, Adolf Hitler.”

“I will always place the mission first, as dictated by the Commander-in-Chief, President X.”

Beyond any reasonable doubt, current US wars are unlawful. Stop and research this if you are unclear on the simple rules of lawful war and why the US is in obvious violation. You cannot argue you are a responsible citizen if you do not understand these laws that govern trillions of our long-term tax dollars and so dramatically affect millions of lives.

US wars in Afghanistan, Iraq, Pakistan, Yemen, and threats for war with Iran are as unlawful as a football middle linebacker kicking the opponent’s center in the head as he touches the ball, claiming it a fumble, and taking possession. What we have in our country is political “leaders” and corporate media reporting this violation as, “The enemy initiated an offensive maneuver that intelligence confirmed was going to be illegal and cause injury. Our defensive forces delivered a blow that pre-emptively stopped their attack. This prevented certain harm from their clear intent to violate their obligation under law.” That is, what we get is propaganda and lies of omission that disinform the public and our troops in Orwellian magnitude.

Showcasing “always place the mission first” in the Soldier’s Creed has a clear purpose: US troops should obey their American Fuehrer. The Oath Keepers is a principle organization to reorientate our current soldiers, veterans, and members of government, law enforcement, and all others with oaths to honor their oath to the US Constitution.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AbfPj00pTNY

Read Full Article Here

 



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.

 



U.S. Strike on Yemen Kills 120, Including Children

U.S. Strike on Yemen Kills 120, Including Children

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E85mb3KM2uk

Obama Orders Military Strike on Yemen

 



Did IntelCenter Photoshop AlQaeda Logo on Mutallab Photo?

Did IntelCenter Photoshop AlQaeda Logo on Mutallab Photo?

NoWorldSystem
January 4, 2009

Here’s a snippet from an excellent Signs of the Times article about the mysteries of the infamous Flight 253 patsy entitled “The Underwear Bomber – Crushing Freedom With Phony Arab Terrorism”.

    Initially, all we had was a Nigerian youth and a misguided effort to detonate what we are told was an explosive compound. Within 24 hours however, IntelCenter, a group of US ex-military and intelligence officials who over the years have somehow managed to produce many of the “al-Qaeda” videos and messages that they serendipitously find on “jihadist websites”, produced a picture of Mutallab with what they claim is the flag of the media arm of “al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula” and a message from the group claiming Mutallab as one of their own:

    “We tell the American people that since you support the leaders who kill our women and children … we have come to slaughter you (and) will strike you with no previous (warning), our vengeance is near,” the statement said

    Scared yet? Well, the people at Intelcenter really hope you are. They put a lot of effort into producing these messages and videos and images. For example, a 2006 ‘al-qaeda’ video featuring al-Zawahiri released by Intelcenter was analyzed by Neal Krawetz, a researcher and computer security consultant. During a presentation he gave at the BlackHat security conference in Las Vegas in 2007 about analyzing digital photographs and video images for alterations and enhancements, Krawetz showed that the video had been altered in a very interesting way.

    Using a program he wrote (and provided on the conference CD-ROM) Krawetz could print out the quantization tables in a JPEG file (that indicate how the image was compressed) and determine the last tool that created the image – that is, the make and model of the camera if the image is original or the version of Photoshop that was used to alter and re-save the image.


    A still from the the Intelcenter-faked “al-qaeda” video

    Krawetz took an image (above) from the 2006 video of al-Zawahiri showing the Mr Magoo look-alike sitting in front of a desk and banner with writing on it. After conducting his error analysis Krawetz was able to determine that the writing on the banner behind al-Zawahiri’s head was added to the image afterward and at the same time as the logo of IntelCenter, which released the video. In short, it seems very likely that IntelCenter produced the writing on the banner, and probably the entire video, from whole cloth.

    Despite this evidence, we are being asked to believe that the latest message and photo from ‘al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula’ that IntelCenter just happened to find on a “Jihadist internet message board” that links Mutallab with ‘al-Qaeda in Yemen’ is authentic!


    An image of Mutallab with ‘al-qaeda logo’ procured (manufactured?) by Intelcenter


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.

“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:

 



US judge lets Blackwater/Xe mercs off the hook

US judge lets Blackwater/Xe mercs off the hook

Press TV
January 1, 2010

A US federal judge has dismissed criminal charges against five Blackwater/Xe security guards accused of fatally shooting 14 people in Baghdad in September 2007.

On Thursday, Judge Ricardo Urbina said US government prosecutors violated the defendants’ rights by using incriminating statements they had made under immunity during a State Department probe to build their case.

“The government used the defendants’ compelled statements to guide its charging decisions, to formulate its theory of the case, to develop investigatory leads, and ultimately to obtain the indictment in the case,” Urbina ruled.

“In short, the government had utterly failed to prove that it made no impermissible use of the defendants’ statement or that such use was harmless beyond a reasonable doubt.”

The Blackwater/Xe mercenaries had been charged with killing 14 Iraqi civilians and wounding 18 others using gunfire and grenades at a busy Baghdad intersection in September 2007.

They faced charges of manslaughter.

In a public relations move meant to clean up the company’s image, which was tarnished by incidents in which civilians were killed in the Iraq war, Blackwater Worldwide rebranded and changed its name to a futuristic new name, Xe (pronounced like the last letter of the alphabet), in February 2009.

However, there is still great animosity toward Blackwater/Xe in Iraq.

Many Iraqis believe the US military allowed Blackwater/Xe mercenaries to commit numerous war crimes against their compatriots with impunity, and the latest court ruling will only reinforce such sentiments.

 



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.

 



U.S Soldiers Are Waking Up!

U.S Soldiers Are Waking Up!

 



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.

 



U.S. Pumps $70 Million in Security Aid to Yemen

U.S. Pumps $70 Million in Security Aid to Yemen

Yemen Post
December 25, 2009

The U.S. pumped about $ 70 million in security aid to Yemen in 2009, with the aim to thwart the expansion of Al-Qaeda in the country amid fears by the west the Yemen may become a safe haven for terrorism, U.S. reports have noted.

The U.S. support to Yemen in the security field did not only focus on giving funds, but also sending military experts to train Yemeni troops how to counter terror as well as taking part in operations against Al-Qaeda targets, they added.

U.S. drones were said to have helped Yemeni security forces to raid Al-Qaeda hideouts and training sites in the south and north at the ends of the past two weeks, killing and arresting scores of terrorist suspects including leaders.

Many civilians were also among the dead in the internationally-hailed but locally-protested raids in Abyan, Sana’a and Shabwa.

The help from U.S. military equipment came to demonstrate an increase in the U.S. support to Yemen financially and logistically and amid reluctance by the U.S. determined to close its jail in Guantanamo, Cuba, where the Yemeni inmates make up half of the jailed there.

The U.S. support also included providing intelligence information about terrorists in Yemen that help the success of the recent raids.

The reports, citing U.S. official who paid visits to Yemen, also noted that the U.S. existence in the country is in a surge, with some unnamed officials saying all support comes under Yemen’s request.

The officials, however, distanced the U.S. from direct involvement in the war between the army and the Houthi insurgents in the far north.

 



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.

 



More Government Crackdown in Airports After Flight 253

Ron Paul Says More Government Crackdown on Americans at Airports After Flight 253 Incident

 



Ben Stein Calls Ron Paul an Anti-Semite

Flight 253 Debate: Ben Stein Calls Ron Paul an Anti-Semite

 



Hugo Chavez orders military to shoot at US aircraft

Hugo Chavez orders military to shoot at US aircraft

London Telegraph
December 21, 2009

President Hugo Chavez has accused the US of violating Venezuela’s airspace with an unmanned spy plane, and ordered his military to shoot down any such aircraft in the future.

Speaking during his weekly television and radio program, Mr Chavez said the aircraft overflew a Venezuelan military base in the western state of Zulia after taking off from neighbouring Colombia. He did not elaborate, but suggested the plane was being used for espionage.

“These are the Yankees. They are entering Venezuela,” he said.

“I’ve ordered them to be shot down,” Mr Chavez said of the aircraft. “We cannot permit this.”

Read Full Article Here

 



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.

 



‘United States’ Means ‘Federal Corporation’

U.S. is a ‘Federal Corporation’ British Crown Colony

 

 


Obama Orders Military Strike on Yemen

Obama Orders Military Strike on Yemen

Press TV
December 18, 2009

Yemen’s Houthi fighters say scores of civilians, including many children, have been killed in US air-raids in the southeast of the war-stricken Arab country.

The Shia fighters on Friday reported the deaths of 63 people, including some 28 children, in the southeastern province of Abyan.

Almost 90 people were also injured in the attacks by US warplanes in the village of Bakazam, they added.

Yemen’s southern provinces have recently been the scene of US airstrikes which Washington claims to be aimed at uprooting an al-Qaeda cell operative in the Persian Gulf state.

But the residents of the area dismiss the claims that al-Qaeda members are being targeted in the US attacks, while a Yemeni lawmaker has also called for an investigation into the raids.

The US operation in southern Yemen comes on top of a joint Saudi-Yemeni military campaign in the country’s war-weary north where Sana’a and Riyadh forces are engaged in a fierce fighting against the Houthi fighters.

The Houthis, who accuse the Sunni-dominated Sana’a government of discrimination and repression against Yemen’s Shia minority, were the target of the army’s off and on attacks before the central government launched an all-out fighting against them in early August.

Saudi Arabia joined the operation later following alleged clashes between its border guards and the Houthis, carrying out regular airstrikes and ground incursions against the fighters.

On Friday, the Houthis said over 160 missiles hit regions along the border with the neighboring kingdom, which they accuse of pounding civilians in villages within the Yemeni territory.

The Saudis have conducted more than 70 air raids in less than 24 hours.

 

Saudi warplanes rain ‘1,011 missiles’ on Yemen

Press TV
December 19, 2009

Houthi fighters say Saudi warplanes have fired some 1,011 missiles on the borderline with Yemen where the Shia population is already under heavy state-led and US-aided bombardment.

The fighters also said on Saturday that the warplanes had carried out nearly 60 air assaults on the residential areas in the northern Al-Jabiri, Al-Dukhan and Al-Malaheet districts.

Saudi Arabia joined Sana’a’s months-long fierce armed campaign against the Shia fighters in November.

The Houthis are accused by the central government of breaking the terms of a ceasefire agreement by taking foreign visitors hostage. The Saudis, on their part, claimed that the fighters had attacked one of their border checkpoints.

The fighters denounce the offensives as a discriminatory campaign against the Shia minority under Riyadh’s auspices.

The offensives, meanwhile, have been taking their toll on the locals with the Saudis reportedly venturing beyond the Houthi positions, targeting civilian areas and using unconventional weaponry including flesh-eating white phosphorus bombs.

The UN High Commissioner for Refugees estimates that since 2004, the conflict has forced up to 175,000 people in the Shia-dominated northwestern province of Sa’ada out of their homes and into overcrowded camps set up by the United Nations.

The US military equipment and intelligence have reportedly entered the equation in the recent days.

The US special forces have reportedly been sent to Yemen to provide the national army with training services. The US Air Force is also said to have been sporadically pounding the northern areas since Monday.

The Houthis said US attacks on Thursday killed 120 civilians, among whom were women and children. Also on Saturday, a report on the Houthis’ website said that three civilians, including a woman and a child, had been killed in fresh air raids carried out by US warplanes.

 



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

 



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.

 



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 Moves Ahead With US African Command

Obama Moves Ahead With US African Command

Pambazuka News
December 17, 2009

Concerned over the supply of oil to the US and a supposed need to continue the global ‘War on Terror’, President Barack Obama has essentially maintained the militarised approach to Africa that was the hallmark of his immediate predecessors George W. Bush and Bill Clinton. The escalation of AFRICOM (United States African Command) activities underlines a troubling commitment to an approach based on might and dominance, one entirely at the expense of promoting sustainable economic development and democracy.

In his July 11, 2009 speech in Accra, Ghana, US President Barack Obama declared, ‘America has a responsibility to advance this vision, not just with words, but with support that strengthens African capacity. When there is genocide in Darfur or terrorists in Somalia, these are not simply African problems – they are global security challenges, and they demand a global response. That is why we stand ready to partner through diplomacy, technical assistance, and logistical support, and will stand behind efforts to hold war criminals accountable. Our Africa Command is focused not on establishing a foothold in the continent, but on confronting these common challenges to advance the security of America, Africa and the world.’

And yet all the available evidence demonstrates that he is determined to continue the expansion of US military activity on the continent initiated by President Bill Clinton in the late 1990s and dramatically escalated by President George W. Bush from 2001 to 2009. While many expected the Obama administration to adopt a security policy toward Africa that would be far less militaristic and unilateral than that pursued by his predecessor, the facts show that he is in fact essentially following the same policy that has guided US military involvement in Africa for more than a decade.

Read Full Article Here

 



U.S. Openly Accepts Bin Laden Long Dead

U.S. Openly Accepts Bin Laden Long Dead

Veterans Today
December 5, 2009

Conservative commentator, former Marine Colonel Bob Pappas has been saying for years that bin Laden died at Tora Bora and that Senator Kerry’s claim that bin Laden escaped with Bush help was a lie. Now we know that Pappas was correct. The embarassment of having Secretary of State Clinton talk about bin Laden in Pakistan was horrific. He has been dead since December 13, 2001 and now, finally, everyone, Obama, McChrystal, Cheney, everyone who isn’t nuts is finally saying what they have known for years.

However, since we lost a couple of hundred of our top special operations forces hunting for bin Laden after we knew he was dead, is someone going to answer for this with some jail time? Since we spent 200 million dollars on “special ops” looking for someone we knew was dead, who is going to jail for that? Since Bush, Rumsfeld and Cheney continually talked about a man they knew was dead, now known to be for reasons of POLITICAL nature, who is going to jail for that? Why were tapes brought out, now known to be forged, as legitimate intelligence to sway the disputed 2004 election in the US? This is a criminal act if there ever was one.

In 66 pages, General Stanley McChrystal never mentions Osama bin Laden. Everything is “Mullah Omar” now. In his talk at West Point, President Obama never mentioned Osama bin Laden. Col. Pappas makes it clear, Vice President Cheney let it “out of the bag” long ago. Bin Laden was killed by American troops many many years ago.

America knew Osama bin Laden died December 13, 2001. After that, his use was hardly one to unite America but rather one to divide, scam and play games. With bin Laden gone, we could have started legitimate nation building in Afghanistan instead of the eternal insurgency that we invented ourselves.

Without our ill informed policies, we could have had a brought diplomatic solution in 2002 in Afghanistan, the one we are ignoring now, and spent money rebuilding the country, 5 cents on the dollar compared to what we are spending fighting a war against an enemy we ourselves recruited thru ignorance.

The bin Laden scam is one of the most shameful acts ever perpetrated against the American people. We don’t even know if he really was an enemy, certainly he was never the person that Bush and Cheney said. In fact, the Bush and bin Laden families were always close friends and had been for many years.

What kind of man was Osama bin Laden? This one time American ally against Russia, son of a wealthy Saudi family, went to Afghanistan to help them fight for their freedom. America saw him as a great hero then. Transcripts of the real bin Laden show him to be much more moderate than we claim, angry at Israel and the US government but showing no anger toward Americans and never making the kind of theats claimed. All of this is public record for any with the will to learn.

Read Full Article Here