flashpoints this monday had patrick cockburn, michael ratner and more

quick entry tonight. c.i. sent me katha pollitt's new book, virginity or death, and i've been reading it most of the evening. it's a collection of her essays from the nation. i finished p. 198 ('earthly rewards for the christian voter') and realized how late it was.

on flashpoints tonight, michael berg talked of how there was no joy in the loss of life and of how donald rumsfeld, bully boy and others in the administration had more blood on their hands than most terrorists.

patrick cockburn talked about iraq. of basra, he said it 'has a state of anarchy at the moment.' on the accusations that the good areas aren't reported on, he said it wasn't true and that the press doesn't go there because the areas are out of control and no 1 is safe there. on determining deaths in iraq of iraqis he said: 'if it happens in baghad, maybe they're taken to the morturary.' otherwise, they're quickly buried. i think c.i. wrote about basra but maybe we just spoke of it over the phone - at any rate, in basra british troops fired on civilians and reportedly killed a child and wounded another. the british investigation? they went to a hospital and no boy had been brought in so, they pompously declared, there was no killing. c.i. said that the child was probably immediately buried and that with the hospital situation in iraq, it was highly unlikely that, since the child was reported to be killed on the spot, anything was done except to bury the child and have a funeral among the family and friends.

patrick said there had to be a timetable for withdrawal, for all the troops.

robert knight covered the death of al zarqawi and the assertions of locals that he was beaten to death by american forces when they arrived on the scene, grabbed the stretcher from the ambulance, removed zarqawi's robe and began kicking him repeatedly for over 15 minutes until he was dead.

knight noted how the u.s. version of what happened continue to change and he addressed the tragic nonsense of guantanamo. (i call it 'nonsense' because bully boy should never have been allowed to hold prisoners without charges or a right to a trial.)

they covered the israeli attack on gaza where 15 people on the beach (adults and children) were killed. why? who knows why. i'm sure the israeli government will offer an explanation and the media will run with it and act as though some little girl needed to see her father die while she's swimming. these were families spending a day at the beach. the israeli government will no doubt pass it off as 'terrorism' and the media will repeat it without questioning it.

israel gets the last word because? because america never wants to address the reality for palestians living under the occupation. 32 people died 'including 13 children.'

this was terrorism. it wasn't palestinians doing the terrorism.

a woman named dr. mona (i don't know her last name) addressed the issue of all the various sanctions that keep needed medical supplies out of the occupied territories.

michael ratner (of the center for constitutional rights and 1 of 4 hosts of law and disorder) discussed the death of the 3 guantanamo prisoners. 2 were saudi and 1 was yemen. 1 was on a hunger strike on and off since august. he talked about the force feeding torture and the u.s. claim that they only used if some 1 was near death. that was a lie. they did it to every 1 on a hunger strike.

the administration belongs in prison. every 1 of them. 'this is a human, moral, political outrage that is unspeakable.'

on the democrats, michael ratner noted their cowardly silence and said 'they're running like they've run from everything else.'

we wrote about this topic for sunday's third estate sunday review editorial and i don't think any 1 participating would deny that c.i. and elaine were more the most passionate about this topic. we all care about it, all find it outrageous and shameful. (and illegal.) but i'm amazed by both elaine & c.i.'s knowledge on this and by their passion.

this morning's entry, the 2nd 1, at the common ills, i read that and, granted i know c.i., i knew there was nothing more to say on c.i.'s end. it is disgusting.

c.i. compared the democrats actions to elvis costello's 'little triggers' and it really is. this are silent shots, they shoot with silence, they kill with silence because the democrats have been too cowardly to stand up on this issue.

i also think, and the editorial makes this point, that it's all interrelated to the other actions. the same we-are-above-the-law attitude operates on every level from the illegal spying on american citizens, to their tax lies, to the lies that sold the war on iraq.

we have crooks & criminals running this country and the democrats are going to stand by and wait until the public figures it out. when they do, and they are firm in it, the democrats will suddenly pipe up. the nation is dying because bully boy is killing it, the democrats are standing by watching in silence.

so that's flashpoints for tonight and, like i said, i want to get back to katha pollitt and finish the book.