SADDAM CAUGHT..... WAR OVER..... LET'S GO HOME!
Note: Comments (sigh) working again...
Saturday, August 16, 2003
PUNISHMENT WITHOUT TRIAL IN IRAQ
'It was punishment without trial'
Jonathan Steele reveals the grim reality of coalition justice in Baghdad
Friday August 15, 2003, The Guardian
Hundreds of Iraqis civilians are being held in makeshift jails run by US troops - many without being charged or even questioned. And in these prisons are children whose parents have no way of locating them...
[such] detention highlights the problems faced by hundreds of Iraqis: arrests followed by incompetent interrogation, or none at all; the lack of an efficient trial-or-release system; shocking prison conditions; constant buck-passing; and sloppy paperwork by the coalition authorities. The result is that in almost every case families take weeks or months to find out where their loved ones are being detained...
...One reason for Iraqi suspects' lengthy stays in the tented camps at Baghdad airport and Abu Ghraib is the coalition authority's decision to award itself 90 days before a detainee needs to be brought before a magistrate or judge. Amnesty International, which has produced a detailed memorandum of concern about the coalition's handling of law and order, points out a bizarre double standard: suspects held by the Iraqi police have to have their case reviewed by a magistrate within 24 hours.
Amnesty also reported that the coalition's rules require that suspects should be allowed to consult a lawyer within 72 hours of "induction" into a detention camp. In practice, there is no deadline for induction and "detainees appear to be invariably denied access to lawyers, sometimes for weeks," it said... link
CZECH TROOPS MAY BE PULLED FROM IRAQ
Troops may be pulled from Iraq
Withdrawal mulled in wake of escalating violence in Basra
By Kevin Livingston, Staff Writer, The Prague Post, (August 14, 2003)
Defense Minister Miroslav Kostelka said he will consider withdrawing troops from the Army's 7th Field Hospital if the security situation in the southern Iraqi city of Basra continues to get worse.
Even in the country's more-stable south, violence against coalition troops has increased recently as temperatures have soared and fuel and electricity have grown sparse.
Czech soldiers fired weapons in the air Aug. 10 to disperse an angry crowd that had blocked a convoy carrying drinking water to the hospital. Stones were thrown at the vehicles, and some soldiers received minor injuries.
In separate incidents, an Iraqi man was killed when he attempted to jump on a garbage truck and fell and another crowd attacked two Czech vehicles that were returning from British Command headquarters. On July 23, a patient was injured when shots were fired at the hospital.
"If the situation were suddenly and sharply to worsen such that the field hospital would be directly threatened, it is possible that measures would be taken that would involve at least some of the personnel being withdrawn," Kostelka told reporters Aug 11.
No Czech troops have been killed since the hospital was deployed to the war-torn country May 18, but the recent violence has prompted hospital commander Mojmir Mrva to tighten security and temporarily block Iraqis from receiving treatment, said Andrej Cirtek of the Defense Ministry's press department. LINK
Could it be the first rats (sorry Czechs) deserting the sinking ship?
Wednesday, August 13, 2003
BUSH STOOGE REWARDED FOR IRAQI NUKE LIES
$20,000 bonus to official who agreed on nuke claim
Energy Dept. honcho ordered dissenters at Iraq pre-briefing to 'shut up, sit down'
Posted: August 12, 2003, 1:00 a.m. Eastern, By Paul Sperry, © 2003 WorldNetDaily.com
WASHINGTON – A former Energy Department intelligence chief who agreed with the White House claim that Iraq had reconstituted its defunct nuclear-arms program was awarded a total of $20,500 in bonuses during the build-up to the war, WorldNetDaily has learned.
Thomas Rider, as acting director of Energy's intelligence office, overruled senior intelligence officers on his staff in voting for the position at a National Foreign Intelligence Board meeting at CIA headquarters last September.
His officers argued at a pre-briefing at Energy headquarters that there was no hard evidence to support the alarming Iraq nuclear charge, and asked to join State Department's dissenting opinion, Energy officials say.
Rider ordered them to "shut up and sit down," according to sources familiar with the meeting.
As a result, State was the intelligence community's lone dissenter in the key National Intelligence Estimate on Iraq's alleged weapons of mass destruction, something the Bush administration is quick to remind critics of its prewar intelligence. So far no banned weapons have been found in Iraq to confirm its charges.
The secret 90-page report, prepared Oct. 1, was rushed to sway members of Congress ahead of a key vote on granting the White House war-making authority. It also formed the underlying evidence for the White House's decision to go to war.<a href="http://www.wnd.com/news/printer-friendly.asp?ARTICLE_ID=34042"> LINK
Tuesday, August 12, 2003
BAGHDAD HEAT OUTPACES MOST OF REST OF PLANET
As the first US soldier died of heatstroke yesterday, there is still no mention of Baghdad temperatures in US media, even as a heat wave in Europe gathers headlines. By contrast, here's a report in a British paper:
You think that's hot? Try being in Baghdad...
By Justin Huggler in Baghdad, 11 August 2003, THE INDEPENDANT
If you think it's hot in Britain, try Iraq. The thermometer in The Independent's car hit 54C (130 F) in central Baghdad yesterday. That was when the air conditioning gave up and blew hot air in our faces.
In these temperatures the sun hits the back of your head like a sledgehammer. You can drink a litre and a half of water in five minutes and still feel thirsty.
Iraqis find the idea of Britons complaining about yesterday's heat hysterical. "What? It's only 37C (105F) and they think it's too hot?" laughed our translator, Haider. "That's spring weather." Locals at a restaurant hooted derisively when pictures of Londoners trying to stay cool came on the television.
Cars overheat from the sun here. When Iraqis park, they leave the bonnet open to cool the engine. It's perfectly natural to pull up at someone's door and ask them to spray the hosepipe over your engine. American soldiers sometimes ask locals to spray them down as well. They are in full battledress - bullet-proof vests and helmets. "All I'm fighting here is this heat," one American told me.
Some locals are convinced the vests are air conditioned -the only reason anyone would wear them in such heat... LINK
BTW If you are wondering about the Basra riots remember its about 5 degrees hotter there than Baghdad and no power for air-conditioning or fuel. LINK
LIBERAL PAPERS MORE BALANCED THAN CONSERVATIVE ONES
'Liberal' Papers More Likely to Criticize Clinton
Study: While 'Conservative' Ones Leave Bush Alone
By Greg Mitchell, AUGUST 11, 2003, Editor & Publisher Online
NEW YORK -- So-called "liberal" newspapers tend to be more open-minded and willing to criticize a like-minded U.S. president than their "conservative" counterparts, according to a report released last week.
In a study for The Joan Shorenstein Center on the Press, Politics and Public Policy at Harvard University, Michael Tomasky looked at 510 editorials over the past decade. He found that on their editorial pages The New York Times and The Washington Post criticized the Clinton administration 30% of the time. By contrast, The Wall Street Journal and The Washington Times opposed the Bush White House 7% of the time.
Tomasky also found a "striking difference in tone between the two sides as well," with the conservative papers using far "harsher" language in responding to Clinton and engaging in ad hominem attacks. The two sides, therefore, "represent two different models of journalism. The conservative editorial pages are more likely to think of themselves as being 'on the team,' as it were..."
In sum, Tomasky writes, "the two sides define partisanship quite differently and envision the roles they play as political actors very differently as well." The 57-page report can be found at www.shorensteincenter.org.
Sunday, August 10, 2003
SCHWARTZNEGGER GIVES FIRST SPEECH AS GOVERNOR
SACRAMENTO - OCT 16, 2003. Movie Actor Arnold Schwartznegger was inaugurated today as Governor of California and gave his first speech from the steps of the Capitol building.
He promised a new era for Californians and free tickets to all his movies. However, he warned neighboring states and Mexico to beware of getting on California's wrong side.
"Dere are a lot of bad people in dose places, and dey better not come here, or I vill take dem out," he warned pithily.
Strangely, he also warned erstwhile ally President Bush not to tread on California's rights.
"He thinks he is a tough guy, but I am a tough guy. If he is a tough guy, vy did he not go after Saddam single-handed? I can take on Saddam vith or vithout dose veapons of mass destruction. "
He also warned welfare cheats.
"If you go cheat on velfare, I vill kick your ass."
Finally, he promised to solve California's fiscal problems without cutting services or raising taxes.
"Fiscal problems? Dose are easy. I vas a skinny little runt till I started vorking out. Den I had no more fiscal problems. People in California should get off der fat asses and vork out. Den they vill have no more fiscal problems neither."