SADDAM CAUGHT..... WAR OVER..... LET'S GO HOME!
Note: Comments (sigh) working again...
Saturday, October 11, 2003
"AN UNPRECEDENTED EXPOSURE" LEAVES WAKE OF DAMAGE
Leak of CIA officers leaves trail of damage
By Warren P. Strobel, Knight Ridder Newspapers
.... the leak by Bush administration officials of that CIA officer's identity may have damaged U.S. national security to a much greater extent than generally realized, current and former agency officials say.
Plame, the wife of former ambassador and Bush critic Joseph Wilson, was a member of a small elite-within-an-elite, a CIA employee operating under "nonofficial cover," in her case as an energy analyst, with little or no protection from the U.S. government if she got caught.
Training agents such as Plame, 40, costs millions of dollars and requires the time-consuming establishment of elaborate fictions, called "legends," including in this case the creation of a CIA front company that helped lend plausibility to her trips overseas.
Compounding the damage, the front company, Brewster-Jennings & Associates, whose name has been reported previously, apparently also was used by other CIA officers whose work now could be at risk, according to Vince Cannistraro, formerly the agency's chief of counterterrorism operations and analysis....
...And Plame's exposure may make it harder for American spies to convince foreigners to share important secrets with them, U.S. intelligence officials said.
Bush partisans tend to downplay the leak's damage, saying Plame's true job was widely known in Washington, if unspoken. And, they say, she had moved from the DO, the CIA's covert arm, to an analysis job.
But intelligence professionals, infuriated over the breach and what they see as the Bush administration's misuse of intelligence on Iraq, vehemently disagree.
Larry Johnson - a former CIA and State Department official who was a 1985 classmate of Plame's in the CIA's case officer-training program at Camp Peary, Va., known as "the Farm" - predicted that when the CIA's internal damage assessment is finished, "at the end of the day, (the harm) will be huge and some people potentially may have lost their lives."
"This is not just another leak. This is an unprecedented exposing of an agent's identity," said former CIA officer Jim Marcinkowski, who's now a prosecutor in Royal Oak, Mich., and who also did CIA training with Plame.
...Critics say the leak was meant to intimidate critics such as Wilson, a former ambassador who traveled to the African country of Niger to investigate claims that Iraq was seeking uranium ore for nuclear weapons. Wilson found no basis for the claims and later publicly criticized Bush's description of Iraq's nuclear weapons program.
Human intelligence - as opposed to electronic surveillance - about WMD development and weapons transfers is hard to come by, especially in "hard target" countries such as Iraq, Iran and North Korea....
...The corps of officers using nonofficial cover is small, said former CIA analyst Melvin Goodman, a critic of Bush's handling of intelligence. The program was the subject of an internal battle, he said, opposed by traditionalists, who favored the orthodox method of having spies pose as American diplomats or military officers.
"It was always controversial. There were never a lot. And there are fewer now than there were," Goodman said.
Johnson, the former CIA and State Department official, said espionage training could cost several million dollars, including $350,000 for the first year alone.
It appears that the Brewster-Jennings front was more than what is called "nominal cover," and was used as part of Plame's espionage, Johnson said.
That means anyone she met with could be in danger now, said Johnson, who described himself as "furious, absolutely furious" at the security breach.
On a personal level, if Plame's covert career wasn't over already, it is now...
...As a CIA officer operating overseas, "There's only one entity in the world that can identify you. That's the U.S. government. When the U.S. government does it, that's it," he said. LINK
ORIGINAL SOURCE: THE SPY GAME
WHY IS THE COST OF THE IRAQI WMD SEARCH CLASSIFIED?
Despite repeated questioning, Bush Administration officials have been unable to provide an explanation as to why the cost of the continuing search for weapons of mass destruction in Iraq is classified.
According to the New York Times, the Administration is asking for over $600 million in additional funds for the Iraq Survey Group, the team led by David Kay that is investigating Iraqi WMD programs, or about twice its estimated budget to date.
See "Officials Say Bush Seeks $600 Million to Hunt Iraq Arms" by James Risen and Judith Miller, New York Times, October 2. But incredibly, that fact is classified. Several alert reporters posed an obvious follow-up question: Why?
In a vivid illustration of the capriciousness of much classification policy, officials were unable to articulate a reason why this sort of information should be kept secret.
"I can't get into the classified section of budget appropriations," replied White House spokesman Scott McClellan at a press briefing on October 2.
"I don't classify these things," said Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld evasively. "I'm sure that they have classifications for good reason."
"I'm sure no one in this room wants me to discuss classified information," Scott McClellan added with apparent sarcasm when the subject was raised again on October 6. See: http://www.fas.org/sgp/news/2003/10/600mill.html
KURDS READY TO DECLARE WAR ON TURKEY?
Kurds Ready to Declare War on Turkey
Rosbalt, 09/10/2003, 17:10
YEREVAN, October 9. KADEK, the assembly for freedom and democracy in Kurdistan (former Kurdish workers party), has already deployed half its forces on Turkish territory in preparation for war. As a Rosbalt correspondent reports, this was announced by Ielmaz Shiar, the official spokesman for KADEK in the Caucasus....
...On September 1 KADEK called an end to the ceasefire declared by Abdullah Ocalan 5 years ago. The KADEK leader presented its 'roadmap' to Ankara for resolving the Kurdish-Turkish conflict. Now KADEK is saying there will be a large-scale war if Turkey does not meet its demands by December 1. LINK
WHAT IS UP WITH NOVAK?
I reported yesterdayabout Novak's criticism of the identification of Johnny Spann as CIA. How then could he burn Valerie Plame? Hypocrisy is not a sufficient answer. What was his motivation?
In intelligence, the question that is asked is Who Benefits?
In the Spann case, Novak trashes George Tenet for revealing Spann's identity. He claims CIA benefited from having Spann as a hero. (Of course, so did the war effort as a whole). But that question can also be asked of Novak himself. By publishing it, he had an opportunity to trash Tenet.
In the Plame case, it's been pointed out that Novak opposed the war on Iraq. Some have suggested his action may have been meant to cause a scandal and undermine that effort. That seems TOO subtle, and in fact it took 3 months for anyone to notice. Perhaps again he was trying to create dissension at CIA and problems for Tenet.
One theme that runs throughout both articles, is his pride at insider knowledge. Is Novak simply so insecure and egocentric he would jeopardize an agent's and all her connections lives, knowing full well he was doing so, simply out of egotism?
Or was he trying to curry favor with the Administration after alienating them? If so, and I think it the most likely explanation it was the most craven of acts betraying lives and one's own conscience to toady to power.
FEAR OF TERRORISM IS THE REAL ENEMY
Preliminary 2001 data:
Number of Deaths Annually: 2,417,798.
Death Rate (age-adjusted): 849.0 deaths per 100,000 population.
Ten Leading Causes of Death in the U.S.:
Heart Disease: 699,697;
Respiratory Disease: 123,974;
Alzheimer's Disease: 53,679;
Nephritis and Nephrosis: 39,661;
Septicemia: 32,275; and
Assault or Homicide (including terrorism at 14th): At 16,775, including 9-11.
Terrorism alone would come in way down the list at 3,000 people. [and 2001 was hardly an average year- ed. note]
Terrorist attack is 2 or 3 times more likely to take a life than lightning, averaged over the past 10 years. But you are 10 times more likely to be struck by lightning.
The chance of being killed by a firearm is 38 times greater than by a terrorist attack.
Accidental death is 323 times more likely.
Automobile accident alone is 137 times more likely.
Your chance of death by disease is 8,000 times greater.
Your chances of dying in an airplane accident in the USA are one-third the chance of death by terrorist attack.
Take a cool, rational look at these dangers that confront us and the resources we have to fight them. Pretend that you are in charge of making a decision in your own community of 100,000 people, and you have a billion dollars to spend protecting them with the following probable benefits. What do you choose?
You can extend 4,000 lives if spent on disease prevention.
You can extend 323 lives if spent on accident prevention.
You can extend 38 lives if spent on homicide prevention.
You can extend 1 life if spent on terrorism prevention .
You can extend .3 lives if spent on lightning prevention or aircraft safety.
The United States - WE - are currently spending billions and billions of dollars to protect ourselves from a terrorist threat. We have no assurance that this expenditure will prevent a single death. We have given George W. Bush and his Republican Congress a blank check to spend whatever they want to pursue this illusion of security. We have done this out of fear - pure unreasoning irrational fear. Terrorism is not the major threat to this society - fear of terrorism has become the threat. link
As Bill Clinton pointed out in 1992 in his campaign against George I, it was "Hope vs Fear." BushCo's economic "plan" offers no hope to the mass of the population. Therefore, to stay in power it must motivate by fear. Hence, the National Security State.
Folks, 1984 has come, if you don't believe me look at the cameras at every stop light. And think of their snappy slogans and how it applies to George Bush's America:
"War is Peace, Freedom is Slavery, Ignorance is Strength"
Friday, October 10, 2003
IGUANA SCOOP! NOVAK KNEW BETTER THAN TO BURN VALERIE PLAME
He criticized Identification of Johnny Spann in 2001, CHECK IT OUT:
Inside Report: Not Secret CIA
Robert Novak, December 3, 2001
WASHINGTON -- Exposure of CIA operative Johnny (Mike) Spann's identity as the first American killed in Afghanistan is viewed by surprised intelligence insiders as an effort by Director George Tenet to boost the embattled CIA's prestige.
Old CIA hands were shocked by the breaking of the old rule keeping secret the names of agents in order to protect their family and associates (in this case, undercover Pakistanis and Tajiks). The rule was violated, according to the insiders, because the CIA needs publicity after the massive intelligence failure of Sept. 11. The death of a heroic agent makes the agency look better.
This incident intensifies congressional criticism of Tenet, with intelligence experts suggesting that a badly planned interrogation of Taliban prisoners cost Spann his life. link
You'll recall from a posting here last week that Johnny Spann's dad was outraged at the publicity about his son's death and has called the Plame leak "treason." (link)
Novak here assumes it was George Tenet's idea to name Johnny Spann. But was it? Or did Tenet acquiesce to a directive from the White House?
UPDATE: What was Novak's motivation?
COSMIC IGUANA MAKES LIBERAL LINKER 'BEST LINKS OF THE DAY' LIST
The Cheeseweasle adds err subtracts err crunches the numbers for Ahnuld, and leads us to George Wills Conservative Travesty
The Cosmic Iguana hits on potential Gropenator lawsuit number one - this one from the UK and Thars gold in them thar wars.
Emphasis Added covers winner take all aspects of the Recall
From the Swamp has Greg's take on the Recall
The Gutless Pacifist gives us Conan the Governor and Comics for Swartzengroper
The Liberal Oasis has Four Lessons from the Recall but they do not mention the one(s) just below.
KIDS WITH AK47s: ONE REASON WHY THINGS ARE STILL MESSED UP IN IRAQ
Amid Iraq unrest, a force of children takes over security
Guards: Poorly trained young Iraqis are being rushed into service to protect key facilities and assist American soldiers.
By Todd Richissin, Sun Foreign Staff, Originally published October 9, 2003
BAGHDAD, Iraq - On the street corner 50 yards from a group of U.S. soldiers, a giggling 10-year-old boy clutched an AK-47 assault rifle, which was fully loaded and ready to fire.
The rifle, once the property of the U.S. military, would not be fired in the direction of the soldiers on this night, but soon would be. Muhammad al-Jurany got the weapon from a member of the new Iraqi security apparatus, the Facilities Protection Service, a force of 14,500 armed guards who are to protect hotels, government buildings and oil pipelines, among other fixtures.
The man who handed the rifle to him to play with, Haider Kadhim, who claimed to be 20, stood at his post along the Tigris River, unarmed, dressed in baggy jeans and sneakers, dancing to music blaring through his headset.
As the U.S. military works to quell unrest in Iraq, it is relying on help from people like Kadhim, young men and women rushed into security service with little training and no real uniforms but armed with the powerful weapons that are now a fixture in this country.
"We've retrained them twice and they seem to get it, then you let them alone for five minutes and it's like they've never talked to us"... LINK
US SURRENDERS SUNNI TOWN
US forces pull out of Iraqi town after repeated attack: local official
Thursday, 09-Oct-2003 2:50AM , Copyright 2003 by Agence France-Presse (via ClariNet)
HUWAIJAH, Iraq, Oct 9 (AF) - US forces Thursday withdrew from the town of Huwaijah, 80 kilometres (50 miles) north-east of Baghdad, due to repeated guerrilla attacks against them, a local official told AFP.
"The American forces based in the institute of technology in Huwaijah have left today to five kilometres (three miles) outside the town, near Bakara," a village between Huwaijah and al-Riyadh, said Atallah Iskandar Al-Juburi, a municipal council member.
According to him, the redeployment was due to "the intensity of anti-American attacks by supporters of deposed president Saddam Hussein or extremist Islamist movements."
More than a thousand inhabitants of the Huwaijah area are being detained by US forces, "increasing the exasperation of the local population," Iraqi attorney Hadi al-Qorra, responsible for Huwaijah's prisoners in US custody, told AFP.
Huwaijah is situated in the Sunni triangle, a swathe of territory stretching north of Baghdad to Saddam's hometown of Tikrit where most anti-coalition attacks outside the capital occur. LINK
KIDS! WHO DO YOU TRUST, YOUR SCHOOL OR YOUR GOVERNMENT?
Now Chow Down on That Radioactive Burger!
Schools Seem in No Hurry to Buy Irradiated Beef
By MARIAN BURROS, NY TIMES, October 8, 2003
ARE irradiated hamburgers coming to your child's school cafeteria next year?
Last spring the federal Department of Agriculture told schools that starting in January they could buy ground beef that had been irradiated to kill bacteria and prevent contamination outbreaks.
But telephone interviews with officials in 56 school districts around the country found few takers so far. Thirty-four of the officials said they had no plans to serve irradiated beef in their school lunch programs, 4 said they would definitely not use it, 13 said they had not yet decided and 5 would not comment. None said they were going to buy it.
The government has said that irradiation is a responsible way to prevent contamination by E. coli 0157:H7, listeria and other dangerous bacteria. But critics have said that not enough studies have been done to prove irradiated beef's safety; that in fact some studies have shown that it may promote cancer and that it should not be given to children until the concerns are met.
Most school officials interviewed said either that contamination was not enough of a problem for them to consider irradiation or that they needed to know a lot more about irradiated beef before using it. The extra cost — an estimated 13 to 20 cents per pound more than regular beef — was another issue cited. link
Dang! Who wouldn't want to spend an extra $.20/lb for the privilege of being a radiation experiment?
The backstory on this is that the govt. is pushing irradiation at the behest of industry which needs a way to dispose of thousands of pounds of radioactive waste cesium. Instead of paying millions to dispose of it, they can charge money for it. Too Cool! Same reason MTBE was put into the gas in California.
Thursday, October 09, 2003
BUSH PROMOTES IRAQ AS VACATION DESTINATION
Bush Says Iraq Is 'Better Than You Probably Think'
President Defends Postwar Policy
By Dana Milbank, Washington Post Staff Writer, Thursday, October 9, 2003; 3:24 PM
MANCHESTER, New Hampshire, Oct. 9 -- President Bush told Americans today that the situation in Iraq is "a lot better than you probably think," as he sought to rally the flagging support for the U.S. occupation.
"For example, you probably think of Iraq as all car bombs and terrorists, but it's not all that way. There's beautiful cruises along the Tigris, swaying palms and a lot of neat stuff. You can go to Vegas and blow all your money, and maybe get mugged by a hooker, but in Iraq you get armed guards 24/7," Bush gushed.
Meanwhile the Baghdad Visitors Bureau was toying with using Bush's phrase to promote tourism. "'It's not as bad as you probably think' has a certain 'je ne sais quois' to be sure, but we are looking at a number of similar phrases," a spokesman commented. "Another is 'It's no worse than Kabul.'"
GITMO SPY CHARGES WERE TRUMPED UP TO GET BUSH'S LIES OUT OF HEADLINES
No spy rap vs. cleric?
Expect just minor Gitmo charges
Daily News Exclusive, By JAMES GORDON MEEK
DAILY NEWS WASHINGTON BUREAU
WASHINGTON - Army investigators are leaning toward filing slap-on-the-wrist charges versus a Muslim chaplain at Guantanamo Bay who was investigated for espionage, a military source told the Daily News yesterday.
The "handful" of minor charges against Capt. Yousef Yee could be leveled by next week and are not expected to include the more serious allegations of spying, sedition or aiding the enemy, according to the source familiar with the probe.
"It's very weak," the military source said, saying the charges are likely to be related to dereliction of duty and disobeying a general order. "It's nothing compared to espionage or anything like that." LINK
The cleric was arrested on September 10, but news wasn't released until later, during the week Bush had to admit Cheney was still lying about Saddam's WMDs and 9/11 links. Another Gitmo arrest was also announced that week despite it allegedly occuring 6 weeks earlier.
WAKE UP AND SMELL THE MARIJUANA, FOLKS! Nothing BushCo does is on the level. Everything they do is about keeping bad news off the front page. Remember the dirty bomber who had no dirty bomb?
BAGHDAD BOB'S ASSISTANT HIRED BY FOX NEWS
Atrios found this little tidbit tucked away in a Guardian article:
The second-in-command at the information ministry, who spent his days reading the reports the minders wrote about visiting foreign journalists, has been employed by Fox News. link
I can just see his first press release for his new employers:
"There is no opposition to the popular American liberators helping Iraqis rebuild their country." Wait, I don't think they really need him!
WHOOPEE! GOLD RUSH IN IRAQ ON YOUR DIME
Spending On Iraq Sets Off Gold Rush:
Lawmakers Fear U.S. Is Losing Control of Funds
By Jonathan Weisman and Anitha Reddy, Washington Post Staff Writers
Thursday, October 9, 2003; Page A01
As the House today takes up President Bush's $87 billion spending request for Iraq and Afghanistan, the debate over the bill is increasingly focused not just on the amount of money but also on who will get it.
Of the $4 billion a month already being spent in Iraq, as much as a third is going to the private contractors who have flooded into the country, said Deborah D. Avant, a political scientist at George Washington University and an expert in the new breed of private military companies. The flow of money will increase greatly if Congress approves Bush's request.
Many of the services being sought -- including police training, crimes-against-humanity investigations and prison-construction expertise -- are highly specialized. Conditions are dangerous. Experts say American taxpayers can expect to pay a hefty premium to contractors in a classic seller's market.
Among the dozens of projects in the proposal is a State Department plan to spend $800 million to build a large training facility for a new Iraqi police force. Management fees alone would run $26 million a month, while 1,500 police trainers would cost $240,000 each per year, or $20,000 each per month. DynCorp of Reston is likely to get the contract... LINK
By Golly, Thar's GOLD in them thar WARS!
AFGHANISTAN FALLING APART
60 killed in Afghan factional fighting
Tanks, heavy artillery being used; Mazar-e-Sharif deserted
KABUL: Soldiers were massing around the northern city of Mazar-e-Sharif on Wednesday after a day of fierce fighting between rival militias that left at least 60 dead and scores wounded, an official from one of the factions said.
The fighting between troops loyal to northern Uzbek commander Abdul Rashid Dostum and rival warlord Atta Mohammed erupted around midday and continued late into the night, said Gen Abdul Sabur, a spokesman for Atta’s Jamiat-e-Islami faction... LINK
ARNOLD MAY BE SUED BY TV HOST
TV host threatens suit over Arnold denial
LONDON, Oct. 4 (UPI) -- A British television host is threatening to sue Arnold Schwarzenegger for libel unless he confesses to groping her breasts against her will.
Friends of Anna Richardson told The Independent she was furious and may file suit against the California gubernatorial candidate, the Sunday paper reported....
...After Richardson's charges that Schwarzenegger pulled her into his lap and tweaked her nipple came to light last week, his campaign aides countered Richardson was the one who invited him to examine her breasts... LINK
Shades of Paula Jones! Gee, I wonder if the Supreme Court will allow him to be sued? Or will they rule he is too IMPORTANT?
Wednesday, October 08, 2003
MUSLIM EXTREMISTS LOVE BUSH
FROM Jihad Unspun:
UNITY FOR THE BLESSED OBLIGATION OF JIHAD
The Rise of The Muslim Nation Starts Now
George Bush may go down in the annals of history as the best thing that ever happened to the Muslim Ummah. With the invasion and rapid occupation of Iraq, just one year after the invasion and occupation of Afghanistan, and with talk of further invasions into Syria, Iran, Egypt and Pakistan, it has become abundantly clear to the whole world that America intends to control all of the oil-rich Arab countries and furthermore, it believes this can be easily accomplished....
...The reality of the situation is crystal clear. The Arab world will not be able to stop the invasion of its lands unless it unites under a common goal and defends its lands now with a military force equal to that of the aggressor.
Osama bin Laden has called for Muslims across the world to set aside their differences in the "blessed obligation of Jihad” saying that "there is a danger when a difference of opinion results in a loss of unity and then there is an obligation on the remaining groups to remain united and keep to the course." link
Turkish troops issue proves divisive
by AlJazeera, Tuesday 07 October 2003 11:52 PM GMT
The United States has welcomed Turkey's decision to send soldiers to Iraq, dismissing clear objections from Iraq's interim leadership that Washington itself installed.
In contrast, ministers from Iraq's Governing Council have roundly criticised the Turkish move.
And there is unease in Turkey itself. Polls indicate most Turks are opposed to their country sending its forces to serve in Iraq.... a recent survey revealed more than 72% of Turks oppose sending troops to war-torn Iraq. About 100 people demonstrated in Ankara on Tuesday in front of the headquarters of the party of Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan.
Iraqi ministers object
In Iraq, the US-appointed Governing Council unanimously adopted a resolution opposing a Turkish troop deployment.
"The council is unanimous in issuing a communique against the sending of Turkish forces to Iraq," said council member Mahmud Othman in Baghdad. "It is the wrong thing to do. It does not add to security....
However, an expected formal announcement of the council's communique was not immediately forthcoming, prompting speculation that the US-led occupation authority had either delayed or squelched it.
Elsewhere, officials of Kurdish groups governing the north of Iraq have also criticised the prospect of a Turkish military deployment. link
Dammit, you're getting those Turks whether you want them or not!
WHITE HOUSE BEGINS COVER-UP
(with marginal comments)
W. House Sifts Leak Probe Papers
WASHINGTON, Oct. 8, 2003 - White House lawyers are screening documents submitted as possible evidence to determine who leaked an undercover CIA officer's identity, mindful that officials from the president on down have expressed doubt that the leaker will be found.
-Can't get any clearer than that: "I doubt you'll find it even if it turns up right in front of you, do you understand?"
It is possible some material could be withheld on grounds of national security or executive privilege, CBS News White House Correspondent Mark Knoller reports.
- It is certain that evidence will be withheld, but only if it is incriminating...
The documents are only part of the investigation. CBS News has learned that the Justice Department has begun to make arrangements to question White House officials.
-The Justice Department has warned officials to talk to their attorneys to make sure they won't spill anything else
President Bush said he wants the Justice Department's investigation completed "as quickly as possible."
-"I wish it was over yesterday. That not being the case, I hope it is NEVER completed."
"I want to know the truth. I want to see to it that the truth prevails," he told reporters Tuesday after a meeting with his Cabinet.
-"I already know the truth. I just want to see to it that you don't." link
IRAQIS: "AMERICA = SADDAM"
U.S. Troops Confront Protesters at Baghdad Mosque
Tue October 7, 2003 03:35 PM ET
BAGHDAD (Reuters) - More than 2,000 Shi'ite protesters confronted hundreds of U.S. troops at a Baghdad mosque on Tuesday, demanding the release of a cleric they said was arrested by the Americans.
U.S. soldiers in riot gear surrounded the protesters on Tuesday evening and told them to leave the area. But most American troops later withdrew and hundreds of Shi'ites were preparing to spend the night at the mosque in southern Baghdad.
Earlier, troops fired in the air and swooped low over the area in helicopters in an effort to make the Shi'ites leave. They arrested more than 20 protesters but almost all were later released. A major highway in Baghdad was blocked by the protest.
At least one Iraqi was injured during the confrontations, hit by a U.S. vehicle.
Ameed Khalid Khateeb, his face severely bruised, said he was dragged away from the protest and beaten by American soldiers.
"They hit me across the face and back with rifle butts. When we tried to pray they refused to let us," he said.
There was no immediate comment from the U.S. military.
Protesters had gathered in the morning at the Ali al-Bayaa mosque in Baghdad's southwestern Bayaa district, waving banners saying "America = Saddam" and "What is this freedom?."...LINK
IRAQI BOTULISM IS B.S.
Revelation casts doubt on Iraq find
Julian Borger in Washington, Tuesday October 7, 2003, The Guardian
... the scientist involved said he was asked to hide the botulinum in his refrigerator at home in 1993. Iraq admitted pursuing a biological weapons programme to UN inspectors two years later. It is unclear whether the Iraqi scientist had received any orders from the regime after that date.
It is also unclear whether the vial contained the bacteria botulinum, from which the toxin is drawn, or the toxin itself, as Mr Kay claimed in interviews over the weekend.
Furthermore, the most lethal form of the germ is the A strain, while the form found by the ISG was the B strain. link
So... a single vial of bacteria forgotten about for 10 years is a WMD program. Boy, they should visit MY refrigerator!
Tuesday, October 07, 2003
In "honor" of Arnold's "triumph" Cosmic Iguana reposts its most famous posting with a twist:
REPOST: SCHWARTZENEGGER 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.... See dat newscaster, she vants me to get fiscal vit her."
From AP via The agonist:
White House lawyers will spend up to two weeks screening responses turned in by roughly 2,000 staff members asked what they know, if anything, about the unauthorized disclosure of an undercover CIA officer's identity.
This is absolutely outrageous. First, the FBI gives 12 hours notice to the White House that they are beginning the investigation. Then they allow their lawyers to "screen" the information. What kind of investigation is this?
AUSTRALIAN SENATE CENSURES PRIME MINISTER OVER IRAQ
Senate censure PM over war
SIDNEY MORNING HERALD, October 7, 2003
THE Senate today censured Prime Minister John Howard for misleading the people of Australia over the reasons for going to war with Iraq.
The Opposition, Greens and Australian Democrats voted together to defeat the government by 33 votes to 30. LINK
THAT is what is supposed to happen in a democracy.
IRAQ'S "NUCLEAR PROGRAM" IS FOR SALE AT $3 A BARREL
The Observer is reporting that the US Army is encouraging Iraqi villagers to sell back the uranium powder looted from Iraqi labs for $3 a barrel. Most was looted by teenagers who were after the barrels themselves not the uranium.
...The report's claim that Iraq was revamping its nuclear programme in such a way that it could constitute any serious threat was described as 'ridiculous' by [a senior Iraqi] scientist. By 1991, when the he left the programme, Iraq had succeeded in producing no more than one kilogram of enriched uranium - 6 to 14 kgs short of a bomb. By 1997, the programme had been exposed and most of its capabilities destroyed.
To produce more would be impossible. Nuclear research, he pointed out, is a massive undertaking and difficult to conceal, especially under sanctions while being monitored by the International Atomic Energy Agency...
As for the teenagers?
...'The effect of the yellow cake will appear in a year or two. They need medication right now and they are not getting it - all the Americans did was buy back the barrels.'
He advises the villagers to drink a lot of milk because the calcium compounds with uranium. link
Iraqis dubious about U.S. contracts
Some awarded without bids, some to Hussein cronies, they complain
Patrick E. Tyler, Raymond Bonner, New York Times, Saturday, October 4, 2003
Baghdad -- Last month the Iraqi Governing Council questioned why the American occupation authority had issued a $20 million contract to buy new revolvers and Kalashnikov rifles for the Iraqi police when the U.S. military was confiscating tens of thousands of weapons every month from Saddam Hussein's abandoned arsenals.
On Wednesday the Iraqi council challenged a U.S. decision to spend $1.2 billion to train 35,000 Iraqi police officers in Jordan when such training could be done in Iraq for a fraction of the cost. Germany and France have offered to provide such training free.
With the U.S. Congress examining more closely than ever how the American occupation authority and the military are spending billions of dollars here, Iraqi officials and businessmen charge that millions of dollars in contracts are being awarded without competitive bidding, some of them to former cronies of Hussein's government. LINK
Cronies? What's wrong with cronies? We give ALL our contracts to cronies...
FATAL VACCINATIONS IN IRAQ?
Mystery blood clots kill U.S. troops
Monday, 06-Oct-2003 8:58PM, United Press International
WASHINGTON, Oct. 6 (UPI) -- Several U.S. soldiers in the Iraqi war died from sudden illnesses and a United Press International probe shows those were triggered by unexplained blood clots.
The Pentagon says blood clots caused two soldiers to collapse and die. At least eight other soldiers have also collapsed and died from what the military has described as non-combat-related causes.
NBC reporter David Bloom also died of a blood clot in his lung after collapsing near Baghdad.
The UPI investigation by reporter Mark Benjamin also points to another disturbing factor of soldiers becoming ill or dying from similar ailments in the United States. In some cases, the soldiers, their families and civilian doctors blame vaccines given to them by the military, particularly the anthrax or smallpox shots.
Some of the soldiers who died suddenly had complained about symptoms suffered by Bloom -- including pain in the legs that could indicate problems with blood clots.
The UPI investigation found 17 soldiers who died of sudden illnesses.
"I would say that that number of cases (blood clot deaths) among young healthy troops would seem to be unusual," said Dr. Jeffrey Sartin, an infectious diseases doctor at the Gundersen Clinic in La Crosse, Wis. LINK
U.S. troops restore popular police chief they had ousted earlier
10/6/2003 8:37 PM, By: Associated Press
Beiji, Iraq-(AP) -- U.S. troops have reversed course in a troubled Iraqi city.
Five months ago, they got rid of an elected police chief who had a lot of support among tribal leaders in the area.
But today, they've reinstated him in hopes of ending the rioting that began Saturday with a pro-Saddam demonstration in the oil refining city of Beiji.
Now that he's back on the job, the police chief is moving quickly to restore order. He met with the city's tribal chiefs in the main mosque, and talked about their demands.
Before he was reinstated, soldiers from the Fourth Infantry Division withstood a 75-minute barrage of mortar rounds, grenades and light arms fire yesterday. link
When it comes to oil cities, we can be pretty accommodating. But hey, we didn't back down, we just acquiesced. Those 75 minute barrages can be very convincing!
GODFATHER OF BLUSTER
Wally George, 71; Firebrand Host Made Insult TV a Hit With Orange County Show
By Jean O. Pasco, LA Times Staff Writer, October 7, 2003
Wally George, who pioneered insult television on his long-running Orange County talk show "Hot Seat" in the 1980s, died Sunday in Fountain Valley.
George, better known to some as the father of actress Rebecca De Mornay, was 71....
... At the height of its popularity in 1984, "Hot Seat" was a must-see for college students, who waited six months for tickets and hours for a choice spot among the 80 audience seats, where they waved U.S. flags and chanted, "Wah-lee!" on cue. George engaged guests whom he called "liberal lunatics" and "fascist fanatics," including 1960s drug guru Timothy Leary and Tom Metzger, a white supremacist leader. LINK
What isn't generally known about Wally is that he was actually a semi-liberal. He worked for democrat Sam Yorty in the 60s, and he had many contacts in the liberal Hollywood community. They understood that it was just his gig, and appearing on his show was a little like going to the Rocky Horror Picture Show. Even though he was a troubled personality, he was no racist like Rush just an insecure person that would do anything for an audience. Still, he may well be blamed for the Rush that followed.
Monday, October 06, 2003
PLAME WAS BURNED NOT OUTED
My contacts remind me that the correct term for what happened to Valerie Plame was burned, not outed. Outed is what happens to gays in the closet. Burned is what happens to spooks when they are betrayed by their own side, by disclosing their identity.
How does Cosmic Iguana have these contacts? Well, don't ask and we won't have to kill you :O)
ROVE'S MURKY HISTORY
The Observer via untelevised:
....Rove has a murky history. In the 1970s he was investigated for running 'dirty tricks' seminars for Republican activists at the time of Watergate. In 1986, while running a Texas governorship campaign, he announced that a bugging device had been found in his office. The discovery hurt Rove's Democrat opponent, who promptly lost the election. Yet it was never discovered who planted the bug and - despite his denials - it is widely believed that Rove put it in his office himself.
One man who has fallen victim to Rove is Jim Hightower, who faced off against Rove's Republican candidate in a Texan election in 1989. Rove leaked extensively to the local press that Hightower was facing an FBI investigation. The allegations decimated Hightower's polls and he went on to lose the election. Hightower was never charged, by the FBI or anyone else.
For Hightower, last week's scandal bears all the hallmarks of Rove's tactics. 'No kind of political action like this is going to be taken without Rove's office putting the stamp of approval on it,' he told The Observer. 'He may not have made the actual phone calls, but that's irrelevant.'
Also, recall that Rove was reputedly bounced from the Bush 1992 campaign for leaking. What we have here is a serial leaker, propgandist, liar and media manipulator ala Goebbels.
SERBIAN TROOPS IN AFGANISTAN WILL SET OFF FURY
Serbs to fight beside US troops in Afghanistan
By David Rennie, DAILY TELEGRAPH, (Filed: 06/10/2003)
Serbian troops are set to join American forces in Afghanistan in a deployment certain to spark fury across the Muslim world.
The prospect of 1,000 veterans of ferocious combat against Muslims in Bosnia and Kosovo fighting in a Muslim country came after American military commanders were reported yesterday to have accepted an unexpected offer from Belgrade to assist in combat missions against al-Qa'eda and the Taliban.
Disputes have already emerged over reports that a powerful Serbian police chief, Gen Goran Radosavljevic, insists that he should lead the Afghan deployment.
Although he has never been indicted of a war crime, human rights groups say units under his command committed atrocities against Albanian civilians during the Kosovo war.
His leadership is likely to be viewed unfavourably by the Pentagon, but defence officials are desperate to ease the burden on overstretched American forces. LINK
"We are so happy to be going," one Serb said, while boarding the plane. "Lots of us Serbs hate Muslims, and ever since Kosovo we haven't had much chance to do anything about it"
"Plus our two best Moslem killers, Slobodan Milosevic and Ratko Mladic are on trial right now for war crimes," he noted.
"But we noticed that old Neo-Nazi, Arnold Schwartznegger was running for Governor so we figured out it was a new day in America, and got this gig. Thanks to General Radosavljevic who took advantage of American desperation, we're doing what we do best....killing Moslems.
"America... Who loves ya, baby?"
U.S. USING TORTURE ON TERROR SUSPECTS?
Briton held as terror suspect says CIA threatened torture
First account of US methods from UK detainee
Vikram Dodd, Saturday October 4, 2003, The Guardian
A British businessman arrested as a suspected terrorist has told the Guardian that US agents threatened him with beatings and rape in an attempt to break him.
Wahab al-Rawi, 38, was denied a lawyer, held incommunicado for four weeks in Gambia, and repeatedly questioned by CIA agents before being released without charge. His account is the first from any Briton about their treatment by the US while held as a suspect in the two year "war on terror".
The account also challenges US denials of the use of torture or the threat of torture on terrorist suspects, thousands of whom have been detained and interrogated across the world.
The Guardian revealed in July that Mr Rawi's business partners, including his brother, Bisher, and Jamil al-Banna, who were arrested with him, have been incarcerated in the US camp at Guantanamo Bay without charge.
Speaking publicly for the first time, Mr Rawi, 38, said:
· CIA agents twice threatened him with torture if he did not cooperate;
· He was subjected to sleep deprivation, with lights permanently kept on in his cell; ...
COINCIDENCE? I THINK NOT!
Ashcroft the Lackey, Who is Conducting the Whitewash of White House Treason, Sets October 7th as the Date for the White House to Turn Over Documents That They Were Allowed a Day to Purge. Of Course, the Cal. Primary is Happening on the 7th. Get it? link
ARNOLD'S LOVE CHILD?
This week's National Enquirer:
ARNOLD SCHWARZENEGGER'S LOVE CHILD SCANDAL
On the eve of the California gubernatorial recall election, Arnold Schwarzenegger is embroiled in a love child scandal!
According to an article in the London paper, The Daily Mail, a Californian woman, Tammy Baker-Tousignant, has told pals that Arnold secretly fathered her son while he was already married to Maria Shriver.
National Enquirer? Well, they broke the Gennifer Flowers story and the Bush twins story. For the latter, they got an anthrax attack. Let's hear it for one part of the media that hasn't become part of the Bush propaganda machine...
BTW, The Enquirer broke the story of Arnold's gropings in 2000 (one of which was on film), at the same time they revealed his plans to run for governor. (LINK)
Maria, you are in denial or more likely you are lying for Arnold.
Sunday, October 05, 2003
BLAIR REALIZED IRAQ WAS NO THREAT, SAYS EX-AIDE
Ex - Aide: Blair Saw Iraq As Limited Threat
By THE ASSOCIATED PRESS, October 5, 2003
LONDON (AP) -- Critics of Prime Minister Tony Blair on Sunday renewed calls for a judicial inquiry into why Britain joined the Iraq war after a former Cabinet minister claimed that Blair believed Saddam Hussein was only a limited threat.
Former Foreign Secretary Robin Cook, who quit the government to protest the U.S.-led invasion, revealed in diary excerpts published Sunday his belief that Blair knew two weeks before the war that Iraq probably didn't possess usable weapons of mass destruction. LINK