robert parry, dixie chicks

mike's 'Robert Parry, Iraq' and 'Robert Parry, Iraq, Judith Regan' deal with the issue of parry covering robert gates and i wanted to start by noting that. robert gates wants to be secretary of defense (replacing the donald) and bully boy wants gates to be as well. why congress has decided to roll over on it, i have no idea. but there are also a number of reporters who are doing the same thing.

robert gates has questions to answer about his involvement with iran-contra as well as his involvement with iraq. this was the topic he addressed on today's counterspin.

lord knows i'm no fan of the show. but they actually had a broadcast you could listen to without grimacing once today. in addition to parry discussing the evidence that gates needs to respond to, they also had barbara koppel, the documentarian whose roots go back to the winter soldier investigation, on to discuss her new film, with cecilia peck, about the dixie chicks and the attacks on them. the film is called shut up and sing. that's probably my favorite film this year and i would recommend to it any 1. i mentioned it in an e-mail to liza and the film hasn't played in her area. if that's happening in your area, don't panic, but do make a note to check it out when it comes out on dvd. i'm thinking that could be soon because i'm betting it will be nominated for a best documentary oscar. (t agrees with me on that and wouldn't take the bet.) so watch for that.

it really is an amazing film. there's footage of dallas, and i think this was 1 of the strongest parts but that's a hard call to make, where the dixie chics are about to perform a concert and they've got to deal with a death threat.

they do not back down. they don't cancel the concert.

i hated the dixie chicking of them and of america but in that moment, i really think you get how fanatic it was. it went far beyond, the hatred, destroying cds and cursing them.

that scene stood out because i trace it to (and i think the film does as well) the hate and abuse heaped on them by gas bags.

no 1 knows, at the start of the concert, what's going to happen. and yet they go on and perform.

to me, that's the spirit of the movie and the spirit of the dixie chicks.

and that's it for me. we're home. we spent wednesday night at my mothers with my grandmother and i figuring out what to do (my mother had a really bad cold). thursday, we were eating at my mothers and my grandmother and i were pulling together the spread. friday, we were at my in-laws. so we've been in three states in the last few days and i'm exhausted. so that's it for me tonight.

here's c.i.'s 'Iraq snapshot:'

Friday, November 24, 2006. Chaos and violence continue in Iraq, over 200 die in Baghdad on Thursday, war resister John A. Rogowskyj Jr. finds that the US military feels no obligation to follow even their own written policy, Bully Boy's meet up in Jordan comes under attack, and is Nouri al-Maliki on the way out?
Starting with resistance within the US military. Conscientious objector John A. Rogowskyj Jr. was deployed to Iraq at the start of this month. The twenty-two-year-old Marine was deployed, as the Associated Press notes, after a Marine captain recommended he be discharged, after a major said he couldn't serve in compbat duty in June, because a D.V. Odell Jr. ("commander of the Fourth Marine Division") doesn't seem to grasp what a c.o. is the policy that the US military has on them. The AP notes that Odell, a major general, found Rogowskyj to be "theologically confused and [he] does not reflect any officially recognized faith group."
Take that, America's forefathers. The slow witted Odell Junior might also make some time to check out "Selective Service System: Fast Facts" which notes: "Beliefs which qualify a registrant for CO status may be religious in nature, but don't have to be. Beliefs may be moral or ethical; however, a man's reasons for not wanting to participate in a war must not be based on politics, expediency, or self-interest." By the military's own guidelines, Odell Junior's statements are not only insulting but ignorant. "May be religious in nature, but don't have to be." Rogowskyj was deployed as a result of Odell Junior's failure to grasp the policies the military has set in place. There ought to be disciplinary actions for Odell (busted back down to a New Orleans post?). More likely, everyone will play stupid (well the tone is set from the Oval Office).
Edward Colimore (Philadelphia Inquirer) reports that Rogowskyj declares in the court papers: "I see now that I must separate from the military with all due haste, or suffer without the forgiveness of grace, for defying the truth that I see plainly before me, that violence as a means or end cannot be tolerated."
To repeat for the slow witted Odell Junior, who not only fails to grasp the freedom of religion clause in the Constitution but also fails to grasp official military policy, Rogowkyj need not belong to any church or faith, need not subscribe to Odell Junior's notions of 'old time religion,' in order to be granted c.o. status.
Rogowskyj signed up for the reserves in 2002 thinking he would be helping stateside during national emergencies.
In Iraq, yesterday the violence prompted ABC to break in to their daytime lineup with a breaking news announcement by Elizabeth Vargas on what is being called the most deadly attack in Iraq since the illegal war began. For which ABC got the usual number of complaints, though nothing like the concerned and outraged comments they received in 2003 when they broke in to announce that Bully Boy was carrying a fake turkey around a base in Iraq.
Kirk Semple (New York Times) reports that 144 people were killed. That number is incorrect today and was wrong yesterday as well when AFP reported that 152 were already dead. Today, All Headline News reports that the death toll is now 202, that at least 250 more are injured with doctors not expecting all to live and that "Officials said that the death toll could rise, as body parts and bodies are dispersed throughout the city and could not be counted." The BBC reports that "at least three" car bombs were used in the cooridnated attacks on Thursday followed by mortar rounds and quotes photo journalist Kareem al-Rubaie on witnessing the violence, "I saw a car from a wedding party, covered in ribbons and flowers. It was burning. There were pools of blood on the street and children dead on the ground." Reuters places the number of bombs at six. CNN reported Thursday: "Thursday's attacks, launched within the course of half an hour, were part of a spasm of violence that shook two Baghdad bastions of support for anti-American Shiite cleric Muqtada al-Sadr -- the Sadr City slum in the Iraqi capital's northeast and the Health Ministry compound, controlled by the cleric's political movement."
The BBC reports that Baghdad is now under curfew and the Baghdad Airport has been closed. Reuters states that all vehicle traffic is banned in Baghdad for Saturday as well. AFP adds that the airport in Basra has been closed as well as well as "its southern seaports."
The 202 dead and counting from Thursday's attack surpasses the previous reported most violent day in Iraq. The BBC notes September 14, 2005 as a day when there were 182 reported deaths in Baghdad.As if the violence on Thursday wasn't bad enough, rumors floated that Dick Cheney was in Iraq on Thursday. CBS and AP report that the White House denies those rumors. Current rumor is that Cheney was supposed to be in Baghdad and the press would be alerted after landing; however, the violence on Thursday resulted in the trip being cancelled.
Press reports continue to caution that Iraq might be on the brink of civil war which leaves one wondering how they might have reported Sherman's March to the Sea?
The violence and chaos continued today.
CBS and AP report that a mortar attack was launched at the Association of Muslim Scholars in Baghdad leaving four guards injured. This is seen as a retaliation for Thursday's attack as are the multiple attacks, noted by Al Jazeera, in the Hurriay district of Baghdad that targeted "four Sunni Mosques with rocket-propelled grenades" and claimed the lives of at least thirty. Reuters reports one dead and two wounded from mortar attacks in Diwaniya and the bombing of "an office of radical cleric Moqtada al-Sadr's . . . in . . . Baquba". CNN reports that a man set off a bomb "strapped to his body" and one in his car in a parking lot in Tal Afar and killed at least 22 people while wounding 30 more.
Reuters reports that at least two funeral goers are wounded in Baghdad after a US helicopter fired on a funeral.
Reuters reports that thirty corpses were discovered in Baghdad while three were discovered in Mosul. Reporting on Wednesday's UN report, Sabrina Tavernise (New York Times) noted that, in the September and October period studied by the UN, "Sixty-five percent of all deaths in Baghdad were categorized as unindentified corpses, the signature of militias, who kidnap, kill and throw away bodies at a rate that now outstrips the slaughter inflicted by suicide bombers."They do so even when the capitol is under 'curfew' (and the never ending 'crackdown').
In addition, AP reports: "Militiamen grabbed six Sunnis as they left Friday worship services, doused them with kerosene and burned them alive as Iraqi soldiers stood by, and seven Sunni mosques came under attack as Shiites took revenge for the slaughter of 215 people in the Sadr City slum."
The BBC reports the death of a British solider in Basra and notes that 126 British soldiers have been killed in Iraq since the start of the illegal war. The British military announces: "The soldier sustained gunshot wounds during the operation and was evacuated to a nearby military hospital. Despite the best possible medical care, the soldier later died from his injuries. The soldier was a member of the Parachute Regiment, on secondment to Headquarters Multinational Division South East, Iraq."
Thursday's attacks and today's is having ripple effects in Iraq that go beyond bombs and bullets.Tuesday, Charles Wolfson (CBS) reported on next week's planned meet up in Jordan between Bully Boy and puppet of the occupation Nouri al-Maliki. The meet up was quickly announced following the announcement of al-Maliki going to Tehran for a Saturday meeting with the presidents of Iran and Syria. The meet up with the Bully Boy is now in question.
CNN reports that, today, "Muqtada al-Sadr's bloc threatened to withdraw support for Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki should he meet President Bush as planned next week" and quotes spokesperson Salih al-Aleiki stating: "We announce that if the security situation and the basic services do not improve, and if the prime minister goes ahead and meets with the criminal Bush in Amman, then we will suspend our memberships with the Iraqi parliament and the government." As Robin Stringer (Bloomberg News) notes, it's not an idle threat: "The United Iraqi Alliance, a coalition of Shiite political parties, won 128 of the 275 seats in the Iraqi parliament in December's elections." Should the al-Sadr block withdraw their support, the United Iraqi Alliance would fall from a 128 member bloc to a 98 member one. That's on the condition that all 98 remain behind al-Maliki -- should he find new support his bloc could increase. The second largest bloc, with 53 members, is the Democratic Patriotic Alliance of Kurdistan which successfully backed (with US support) Jalal Talabani for president of Iraq.
The above follows on the heels of Tom Hayden's report (for Common Dreams) that the US is putting out feelers for new governing officials in Iraq which could include the disposing of al-Maliki.



it's late and i'm tired. more than tired, my left nostril seems to be stopped up.

which means a cold. i always get that for some reason.

whenever i'm coming down with a cold, my left nostril gets stopped up. i've been blowing on tissues all night and 5 minutes after, it'll be stopped up again.

my mother has a cold and that's probably where i got mine.

we went over tonight to avoid traffic tomorrow morning. we got here and she was sick beyond belief. i sent flyboy out for cold medicine and my grandmother.

pies i can handle. i've got the last batch in the oven.

but i am not a cook. i sent my mother to bed and there's the alarm.

the pies are all done now. they're cooling.

so i was saying that i sent my mother to bed.

she was too sick to cook.

i got on the phone to c.i. who, after suggesting i serve gray with ash 'since that is 1 of your specialities,' was quite helpful. c.i. said go into the pantry, which i did, and there were instant potatoes. thank goodness (c.i. said: 'if you're going to peel potatoes with your nails, take a picture, i want to see that!') (i have very long finger nails.)

so that's taken care of. those will be made tomorrow.

the pies are from scratch except the crusts. my mother had pie fillings, store bought, but c.i. was like 'i don't know a thing about that, look for cans of condensed milk.'

the pumpkin pie wasn't a problem because i do know how to make that from scratch but i also made a pecan pie, an apple pie, a cherry pie, a key lime pie, a cheese cake and fudge.

we'll have desserts. turkey, dressing, potatoes and desserts.

it's not that bad. we'll have a salad. i'll fix that tomorrow.

my grandmother is taking care of the turkey and dressing. she can cook.

and when flyboy got back with her, i got off the phone with c.i. and my grandmother and i went over what we had to work with. my mother was knocked out with the cold medicine by the time either of us thought, 'is any 1 bringing anything?'

with my luck, they're all bringing pies.

my grandmother was so impressed with the key lime pie. she said right away, 'c.i. talked you through that 1, right?'

oh, she knows me too well.

i actually usually make 1 of those but with lime juice. not fresh limes. the first thing c.i. said when i was in a panic about there being no bottle of lime juice was to see if there were any limes. there were. my mother is huge on fruit. i left a few in case she was intending that some slices be offered with iced tea.

i don't know how people do this every year. or twice a year.

it's so much easier to just be a guest.

even the 1st time flyboy and i were married, i didn't cook for guests. i might make a dessert but we hired caterers if it was even semi-formal. otherwise, it was take out.

oh, c.i. thinks a line by me was used in the snapshot. i got a call today asking 'when did you say that about ross perot?' i had no idea and pointed out, 'we both use that line all the time. i may have gotten it from you.' i finally got c.i. to drop it by saying if i went looking for it, we were talking at least an hour so post the snapshot already. and on that note ...

here's c.i.'s 'Iraq snapshot:'

Wednesday, November 22, 2006. Chaos and violence continue in Iraq; a lesson is learned (hopefully) that stand up comedy is not for everyone; is England planning to withdraw troops from Iraq?; October becomes the deadliest month for Iraqis since the illegal war began;

Starting with news of war resisters within the US military. Yesterday,
Ehren Watada held a press conference, early in the morning. Possibly too early for the independent print publications or possibly it didn't make the New York Times so they had no heads up? Whatever the reason, Alex Massie (UK's Telgraph) did cover it and notes that Watada, the first commissioned officer to publicly refuse to deploy to Iraq, intends to "fight with with everything I have for my freedom and that of all Americans. I will face imprisonment to stand up for my beliefs" which means "subpoena withnesses - including 'decision-makers' - whose testimony will . . . demonstrate the war's illegality."

Turning to news of another US war resister,
Agustin Aguayo, who had a day in court yesterday, even if he wasn't present for it. Leo Shane III (Stars and Stripes) reports that while Aguayo is held in "military confinement in Mannheim, Germany," his attorney, Peter Goldberger, told the judges of the US Court of Appeals in D.C. that Aguayo was wrongly denied c.o. status and not supplied a sound reason for the denials: "Enough is enough. This decision by the Army has been baseless and cruel. They've had two previous chances to recognize his status, and they've failed to give a reason for denying it twice."

Turning to news of war resister
Darrell Anderson who self-checked out of the military in January 2005 and turned himself in at Fort Knox on October 3, 2006. By the end of the week, he was released from military custody and it was announced he would not be charged. He continues to speak out and will be taking part in events next month.

Courage to Resist:

Military resisters, their families, veterans and concerned community members call for public action Dec. 8-10th!
It's time for us to escalate public pressure and action in support of the growing movement of thousands of courageous men and women GI's who have in many different ways followed the their conscience, upholding international law, taking a principled stand against unjust, illegal war and occupation and stood up for their rights. Widespread public support and pressure will help create true support for courageous troops facing isolation and repression, and help protect their civil liberties and human rights. We call for the following:1) Support for War Objectors 2) Protect the Right to Conscientious Objection 3) Protect the Liberties & Human Rights of GI's 4) Sanctuary for War Objectors. We urge you to join us December 8-10th for a weekend of action in supportof GI Resistance and GI Rights!

As part of those events, Darrell Anderson will be at the College of Marin on Friday, December 8th to speak at a screening of The Ground Truth. Also speaking will be Anita Anderson (or Anita Dennis to use her married name), Darrell's mother. This is one of a number of events
Courage to Resist and other organizations will be staging.

And we can't note Anderson without noting
Kyle Snyder who shared the same attorney and was supposed to share the same agreement. Synder self-checked out and moved to Canada after serving in Iraq. He returned to the United States last month and, on October 31st, turning himself in at Fort Knox only to self-check out again after discovering the military had lied yet again. As Courage to Resist notes, "At the risk of arrest, he is speaking out bravely on behalf of war resisters and active duty GI's." They are asking that you: "Call Ft. Leonard Wood Fort Leonard Wood Office of the Commanding General Major General William McCoy, Jr., 573-596-0131 and the Public Affairs Office, 573-563-4013 email: alleym@wood.army.mil -- Demand that the Army 'Discharge Kyle Snyder with No Punishment'."

Until resistance is covered, the illegal war continues. And the dead and wounded mount on all sides as the war continues.
CNN reports that the United Nations Assistance Mission in Iraq has issued a new figure: 3,709. 3,709 is the figure of Iraqis killed during the month of October. The UNAMI found "that 7,054 civilians were violently killed, with no less than 4,984 in Baghdad alone, most of them as a result of gunshot wounds. Compared to the number of 6,599 killed in July and August reported by HRO [UN Human Rights Office] previously, it is evident that violence continued to claim an increasing number of victims. . . . During the period under review, the report points out that freedom of expression continued to be undermined, minorities continued to be adversely and directly affected, women's conditions continued to deteriorate, the targeting of professionals, such as journalists, teachers, professors, lawyers, doctors and other intellectuals, political, tribal and religious leaders, Government officials and members of the security forces continued unabated and that violence is impacting education, preventing many schools and universites from opening. According to the report, the deteriorating situtation in the country, coupled with increasing poverty, has generated unparalleled movements of IDPs [Internally Displaced People] in search of safety within and outside the country. In addition, the document indicates that the total number of detainees in Iraq as of 31 October stood at 29,256 (13,571 of which are in MNF I facilities), noting a decrease from 35,543 at the end of August."

And the violence and chaos continues. Among the reported events today . . .


Reuters notes that bombs continued to explode in Iraq: roadside bombs in Baghdad injured two polie officers,


CBS and AP report on the shooting death of Raad Jaafar Hamadi who worked "for the state-run al-Sabah newspaper in Baghdad . . . The slaying raised to at least 92 the number of journalists who have been killed in Iraq since the war began. Thirty-six other media employees -- including drivers, interpreters and guards -- also have been killed, all of them Iraqi except one Lebanese." Al Jazeera notes that he was shot by four people "travelling in a black BMW". Reuters notes the following gunfire incidents: Ahmed al-Allawi seriously wounded in an attack in Kerbala, a police officer shot dead in Falluja, and three police officers shot dead in Baquba. CNN notes the shooting deaths of two in Muqtadya (five more wounded).


Reuters notes that 14 corpses were discovered in Mosul, three near Ramadi, and the "police Major Basim Hasan al-Hasnawi" was discovered shot to death in Kerbala.

Also today, the
US military announced: "A Task Force Lightning Soldier assigned to 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 82nd Airborne Division, died of a non-battle injury in Salah ad Din Province Tuesday." Don't expect to read about it indymedia, the soldier probably couldn't have made them a playa so they have no time. Which was followed later by this announcement: "A Task Force Lightning Soldier assigned to 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 82nd Airborne Division, was killed and three others were wounded when an improvised explosive device detonated near their vehicle while they were conducting operations in Salah ad Din Province Tuesday." The two deaths bring the US troops fatality count to 49 for the month and to 2869 since the start of the illegal war. (If ICCC has not updated those numbers when this goes up, Monday we noted their count of 47 and 2867.)

Is there a change in the air? In England,
This Is London reports: "Foreign Secretary Margaret Beckett this afternoon surprised MPs by signalling the countdown to a withdrawal from Iraq. She told the Commons that Basra, where the bulk of the UK's 7,200 personnel are stationed, could be handed over from British military control to Iraqi forces as early as next spring." Basra has been a violent area for British soldiers (and for Iraqis). Earlier this month, on England's Rememberance Sunday, four British troops were killed while on a boat patrol in Basra and three more were wounded. The four killed included Sharron Elliott who was "the second British female servicewoman to die in action." The other three were Jason Hylton, Ben Nowak, and Lee Hopkins. Mortar attacks have been common in Basra and, in August, a British soldier died as a result of wounds received from mortar rounds. In October, a British soldier died in Basra from road traffic. The end of October was also when the British consulate in Basra was evacuated after it was decided it was no longer safe after two months of mortar attacks. (In August, British troops 'evacuated' from their base in Amara due to repeated mortar attacks.)

Mark Tran (Guardian of London) reports that Dhi Qar and Muthanna have already been returned to Iraqi control and that "[m]ost UK troops are stationed in and around Basra". Tran also notes that General Richard Dannatt had earlier stated (and later dickered over the wording) the statement that England should leave Iraq "some time soon." Dekiva Bhat (Times of London) notes that Beckett expressed "confidence" about turning over another province, Maysan, "in January" which would leave Basra as the only area UK troops are currently responsible for patrolling. Bhat notes the opinion of the paper's Diplomatic Editor Richard Beeston: "The most likely forms of a withcrawal, Beeston said, would see British troops leaving Basra but remaining in the Shaiba logistics base, outside the city, where they would have armoured units and helicopters on stand-by should Iraqi forces need reinforcements. He added that it appeared that the US military was thinking in similar tones -- considering the possibility of handing over to Iraqi forces by withdrawing from bases but without completely leaving the country."

In which case, it wouldn't be a withdrawal at all. It would be more like a man who says he's going to pull out and doesn't.

Turning to news of long, public "deaths," some people shouldn't try to do stand up -- both because they aren't funny and because they can't handle hecklers. Yes, we're talking Poppy Bush. On Tuesday, Poppy Bush took his tired act to the United Arab Emirates and it wasn't pretty. Even the sure laugh getter of "
My son is a honest man" didn't turn out the way Poppy would have liked. While Poppy tried to command the stage, it was a female heckler, who stated: "We do not respect your son. We do not respect what he's doing all over the world," who got the crowd pumping. AP reports: "Bush appeared stunned as the auidence of young business leaders whooped and whistled in approval." Poppy Bush stated that the Bully Boy "is working hard for peace" a 'funny' that didn't help pull the audience to his side and even the laugh getter of "This is going to work out in Iraq" didn't turn him into Jon Stewart. Attacking the audience, Bully Boy began baiting them with "How come everybody wants to come to the United States if the United States is so bad?"

Possibly he was so weakened by that point causing even the hecklers to not notice the significant and obvious drop in attempted enrollments at US campuses? And apparently finally responding to the public fact that his family built their money not just on oil but also by collaborating with the Nazi war machine,
Poppy Bush stated: "To suggest that everything we do is because we're hungry for money, I think that's crazy." Ben Aris and Duncan Campbell (Guardian of London) reported the following in 2004:

George Bush's grandfather, the late US senator Prescott Bush, was a director and shareholder of companies that profited from their involvement with the financial backers of Nazi Germany.

The Guardian has obtained confirmation from newly discovered files in the US National Archives that a firm of which Prescott Bush was a director was involved with the financial architects of Nazism.

His business dealings, which continued until his company's assets were seized in 1942 under the Trading with the Enemy Act, has led more than 60 years later to a civil action for damages being brought in Germany against the Bush family by two former slave labourers at Auschwitz and to a hum of pre-election controversy.

Let the record show that Poppy Bush has stated the drive wasn't just about money. Apparently that family also believed in 'causes.'

In news of a draft in the United States, which
US Rep. Charlie Rangel is advocating, Marc Sandalow (San Francisco Chronicle) notes that "Incoming House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said this morning she does not support bringing back the military draft." Also weighing in against Rangel's proposal are Ron Jacobs (at Op-Ed News) and Mike (Mikey Likes It!).

Lastly, as
Danny Schechter News Dissector reminds today is the anniversary of the assassination of JFK (November 22, 1963). Danny notes Beyond JFK and refers to people to Globalvision for more info. Beyond JFK is a documentary he made while Oliver Stone's JFK was being filmed. He interviews various people who were there (including Robert MacNeil -- formerly of The NewsHour). If you rent or purchase the DVD special edition (two disc) of Oliver Stone's JFK, the documentary is included as a bonus disc. Jess notes a number of e-mails are asking about it.

In addition,on today's
KPFA's Guns and Butter (airs over the airwaves and online at 1:00 pm PST, 3:00 pm Central and 4:00 pm EST) Bonnie Faulkner offers the second half of her interview with John Judge on the topic of the JFK assassination. And Joan Mellen (who is still doing events on her book tour for Farewell to Justice) essay on the topic remains popular with members. (Book tour events include Mandeville, LA on Jan 16th and NYC Jan. 28th).

mikey likes it


passports, robert altman, iraq

the associated press reports: 'Nearly all air travelers entering the U.S. will be required to show passports beginning Jan. 23, including returning Americans and people from Canada and other nations in the Western Hemisphere.'

i am so angry about that.


i have a friend who left an abusive relationship. that had a dream marriage and then they didn't. he just turned 1 day and started hitting her, started threatening her. when she left, he was full of 'i will kill you' and other threats. she divorced him. she changed her name.

she got a new life and started over. in a new city.

she cut off all mutual friends because she didn't want him to find her.

she changed her name in an area she moved to just to do that.

she didn't hire an attorney. she wanted as few trails as possible. so she went to a law library, copied out the forms, paid the filing fee herself, stood before the judge by herself explaining why she wanted to change her name.

they gave her some form of a receipt. literally, a stamped receipt.

this was years and years before 9-11.

it wasn't a problem for changing her driver's lic and social security accepted it as well.

when this nonsense about passports being required to go out of the country (she goes to canada quite often), she decided she'd better get 1.

so she tried to with her driver's lic., her social security card, and the receipt that's always been good enough. she was told that didn't prove anything, the receipt.

the judge is dead and the courthouse has never been able to find the papers. her copy?

as soon as she changed all of her documents, she moved (on purpose) 7 times in a row, to 7 different cities. she didn't want to leave any trail for her ex-husband.

people sometimes come up to her and say, '__!' and she pretends she doesn't know them. (and they buy it.) she cut off every 1 that wasn't her friend only.

this man was a psycho. he killed her cat and nailed it to her front door the day after the divorce was final.

she had to cut out most of her family because they felt he was just 'stressed over money' and she should be more understanding.

(this truly was before 9-11 and before we, as a society, started to take domestic abuse even 1/2 way seriously. i still don't believe we do.)

so now she's basically locked into the u.s.

she can't leave once the policy goes through and she's enjoyed her trips to canada.

i kept telling her (even a few months ago), they will never do this.

i didn't think they would.

and why are they?

the hijackers, as i understand it, were issued passports via saudi arabia. the passports weren't fake 1s. i don't see how this prevents anything.

i do see how this hurts other people.

i saw this and called a friend who works with domestic violence victims.

she said she'd never thought about this. she knows some women who did change their names and try to erase their tracks so that violent ex-es couldn't come after them. she wonders if they did it themselves and, if so, they'll have any trouble with paper work?

when my friend travels to canada now, it's with her husband. and she avoided marrying him forever, not because she didn't love him, but because she worried about producing a birth certificate.

she finally explained that to him and they were able to marry where 1 wasn't required. (she's obviously over 18.)

but i wonder how many women this might effect?

maybe it's a small number?

if you look at the current requirements, 1st thing is a birth certificate or a passport issued 15 years ago.

she's screwed now. unless she buys a fake birth certificate.

which she won't do (it's been suggested to her by people before) because she doesn't want to break the law. if she'd done it awhile back, she might have gotten some sympathetic clerk if she'd been caught out. but chances are that wouldn't happen today.

so she's screwed.

and i'm pissed.

the things we have given up since 9-11 to be 'safer but not safe' that had nothing to do with the hijackers.

i was (and still am) so upset that i tivoed the tony bennett concert but haven't watched it yet. it was on nbc tonight and, if you come here often, you know i am huge barbra streisand fan. she's on the special. until i saw that ap story, i was all eager to see the special. i was thinking, 'this is a great day!' then that story just destroyed it for me.

i think i'll make my christmas gift to her this year a good attorney. the 1s she's gone to have said they'd need a ton of money or they weren't even sure how to go about straightening it out since the court house has lost the records. i'll call my mother-in-law tomorrow morning and get some suggestions from her.

i'm sure c.i. would know what to do but i am also sure c.i.'s depressed about the news of robert altman's death. i met him at a party once but i didn't speak to him other than hello. i did speak to his wife, i believe her name is katherine. she was a very smart, very funny woman. (probably still is.) let me see if i can find something on that. c.i. mentions it at the end of the snapshot but there's no link. okay, 'Kathryn Reed Altman.' i mispelled her name (it's not like she had on a name tag). she is a very smart and funny woman. you could tell he really counted on her. i say that because what i noticed was the way he would look over to her or for her throughout the night. they made a very nice couple.

here's the link to an ap story at yahoo.

flyboy told me about that today and i thought, 'oh c.i.'s going to be upset.' i went to the common ills and there was no snapshot. so i called jim to offer to do the snapshot. jim said c.i. was upset (and out then) but that the snapshot had been done as an e-mail. he ended up posting it from c.i.'s e-mail while we were on the phone (and then doing the crossposts which c.i. hadn't thought of - no surprise there).

i wouldn't be able to do the snapshot even 1/2 as well as c.i. but i knew the death would be hard. so when i didn't see it up at the site, i was ready.

i'm sorry for his wife. again, they were obviously a team.

i'm sorry for his friends too.

at least the fans of his movies (including me) have those. i think my favorite film is the player. i didn't care for the dance movie, i forget the name, with neve campbell, when i saw it. then i saw it again with c.i. who was pointing out things (including the use of space) that i honestly had not picked up on. i was taking the film at a very literal level - just the writing and the performance of the actors. there is a whole other level in that. i believe it's called the company.

he's using space the way he did in come back to the five and dime, jimmy dean, jimmy dean. which is another favorite.

i even enjoyed some of the films that weren't critical favorites. health is an example of that. i laughed very hard with cookie's fortune. if you count videotapes and dvds, i have more of his films in my collection than any other director. of all the films, the 1 i watch the most is come back to the five and dime, jimmy dean, jimmy dean. after that, it's probably nashville, then the player, then short cuts.

short cuts is the 1 i'd recommend if you're not familiar with robert altman because it weaves so many stories and offers so many strong performances including 1s by: lili taylor, lily tomlin, jennifer jason leigh, tim robbins, andie mcdowell (i really love her performance in this), julianne moore, madeline stowe, tim robbins, christopher penn ...

i really think that's tim robbins' best and sexiest performance. he's a cheater. i'm not endorsing that. i'm just always jazzed by the energy. he doesn't get to play that type very often. either he's playing a noble character or a tormented 1. this was just a very small man caught up in life and not willing to grow up - he's cheating on his wife, he gets rid of the family dog because the barking gets on his nerves and he tells the kids the dog ran away. it could be a character you just hate. or maybe you feel sorry for. but he brought something really strong to it and reminded me of some of the performances paul newman's given.

the women are brilliant in it. every 1 of them. they're just amazing. from jennifer jason leigh jerking guys off over the phone while she's fixing snacks for her kids, to lily tomlin who really does ...

i'm stopping. i want to single out lily tomlin. i love lily. she's always funny, she's always moving.

but she has a real arc in this film. her character does. her daughter's lily taylor and they have issues between them. she doesn't want to deal with it, she wants to dismiss it. when you see that, you may wonder how she can?

then she accidentally runs over andie mcdowell's child.

she checks to see if he's okay and he can walk and talk. (he'll die later on.) he doesn't want any help from her.

later, as the movie goes on, she'll invent this whole story about what happened and you can see her start to believe it as she does. that's the clue to how she can deny what happened to her daughter (played by lily taylor). it's really an amazing performance.

i think all the women give amazing performances. the only males that don't are matthew modine (who always bores the hell out of me - even more so in scenes with julianne moore where she's so amazing and he's just kind of standing there) and jack lemmon who just came off so creepy. on lemmon, that might have been the character he was paying but he creeps me out in this movie. (and i like jack lemmon in everything else i've seen.)

now i'm sad and i'm mad.

let me end this post.

here's c.i.'s 'iraq snapshot:'

Tuesday, November 21, 2006. Chaos and violence continue in Iraq; Syria, Iraq and,yes, Iran prepare for a weekend summit; US war resister Agustin Aguayo's case lands in court; a new poll finds Shia and Sunnis in Iraq agreeing: US troops out of their country; and Kofi Annan sings a little Jimmy Cliff.

Starting with Agustin Aguayo. On September 2nd, Aguayo self-checked out of the US military after his repeated attempts to obtain conscientious objector status failed (2004), after his attempts to address the matter in the US federal courts failed (August 24, 2006) and while he was about to be sent back to Iraq. While serving in Iraq, as a medic, previously, Aguayo was confronted with the realities and
decided that, due to moral and religious reasons, he could not serve in the illegal war. Helga Aguayo, Agustin's wife, explained to Mimi Mohammed (Los Angelest Times): "My husband has never broken a law and I am proud of him. He doesn't want to support the war -- he cannot do so conscientisouly. He is a conscientious objector, but the Army forced him to become a resister." On September 26th, less than thirty days after self-checking out, Aguayo turned himself at Fort Irwin. Though Fort Irwin is in California, Aguayo's wife and two daughters were not allowed to see him and the military quickly sent him back overseas to Germany.

On yesterday's
The KPFA Evening News, Aaron Glantz reported on Aguayo's case which landed in the U.S. Court of Appeals in Washington, D.C. -- the first "for a federal court since 1971." Glantz spoke with Vietnam war resister and author David Cortright (Soldiers in Revolt: The American Military Today) and Cortright noted the similarities between then and now: the "transferring . . . to other bases" and the fact that such transfers put them in contact with "other soldiers who were opposed".

Kevin Dougherty (Stars and Stripes) reported that the court schedule for today would "considst of just oral arguments. Each side has been alotted 15 minutes to articulate their case." Today, Glantz reports (at OneWorld) on the above and notes Aguayo's beliefs: "By doing guard duty, appearing to be armed, even without bullets, I gave the false impression that I would kill if need be. I am not willing to live a lie to satisfy any deployment operation. By helping countless soldiers for 'sick-call' as well as driving soldiers around on patrols I helped them get physcially better and be able to go out and do the very thing I am against -- kill. This is something my conscience will not allow me to do."

Matt Apuzzo (AP) reports: "Judge A. Raymond Randolph, one of the three judges on the case, said he'd been reading up on the Vietnam appeals and asked how the case differs from those filed decades ago by people who realized their opposition to war only after receiving a draft card. Attorney Peter Goldberger said the Aguayo's beliefs evolved over time and 'crystalized' to the point that he could no longer take a life." Joel Seidman (NBC News) notes that "Aguayo has unsuccessfully fought the Pentagon for more than two years to be declared a conscientious objector and win a discharge."

In his court statement, Agustin notes: "And even if I truly had non-combatant status, I have been to Iraq for Operation Iraqi Freedom II, and I know what to expect. I know what will be expected of me. And because of this first-hand knowledge, I simply cannot take part in this deployment. Some people might think that a fear of death is the number one reason for refusing to deploy. But that is not correct. I have to be true to myself and do what is right. Even though I deployed as a non-combatant in 2004-05 I still carry guilt from my participation . . . When you know better you do better. Therefore, this time I will not deploy. My conscientious objection applies to all forms and aspects of war. . . I have come to believe and understand that the purpose of our existence on earth is to value, cherish and conserve the miracle that is human life. To do so one must show each and every day through actions that nothing is of greater importance than the conservation of life. . . . I have made my choice for peace, for humanity, and for a better tomorrow. Even though I understand that one of the consequences of refusing to deploy may possibly be a trial by court-martial and even my imprisonment, I cannot and will not deploy."


CNN reports: "A decoy vehicle used in a convoy of the Iraqi parlaiment speaker exploded Tuesday inside the heavily fortified Green Zone while parliament was in session, a parliament information officer said. The vehicle, part of Speaker Mahmoud al-Mashhadani's convoy, was damaged when explosives placed under the rear right side of it exploded in a parking lot, the officer said. One of the drivers was slightly wounded."

Reuters notes a roadside bomb in Baghdad that left nine wounded and a car bomb in Baghdad that took one life and left six wounded.

A US raid in the Sadr City section of Baghdad resulted in deaths.
Xinhua notes this was the third day in a row that US and Iraqi forces had "raided the Shiite slum". An early AP report by Thomas Wagner cited Mohammed Ismail ("Police Capt.") who "said a young boy and two other people were killed in the early morning raid and 15 people were wounded. Several houses were damaged." The US military has claimed that they are after a "cell [which] has more than 30 members" which apparently includes the young boy? CNN notes that "a mother and her 8-month-old child" were also killed and puts the wounded at 18.
Bassem Mroue (AP) reports that Shi'ite legislator Saleh al-Ukailli held "the body of the dead child* outside the hospital morgue and angrily condemned Iraq's government for allowing such attacks" while vowing not to "return to parliament until the occupation troops leave the country." [*When this was Thomas Wagner's article, it made sense. If you use the link, a whole chunk of it is gone. Including the paragraph that was before, the one on Mohammed Ismail.]


Reuters notes the shooting death of a police officer in Hawija, the shooting death of of another police officer in Mosul, and the shooting death of "Ali al-Shimari, the mayor of the town of Hibhib, near Baquba".


CBS and AP report that 24 corpses were discovered in Baghdad and Dujail.

Reuters reports that the International Organisation for Migration has found (no surprise) that the at risk groups in Iraq of being left homeless and hungry are : "[s]ingle women, children and the old and sick" with "children . . . especially vulnerable to malnutrition and spread of disease." The United Nations Refugee agency (UNHCR) estimates that "at least 1.6 million Iraqis" are now displaced within Iraq.

This comes as the
United Nations Integrated Regional Information Networks (IRIN) reports: "Heavy rains, thunderstorms and enormous mudlsides in Iraq's northern Kurdish region have submerged vast areas and made nearly 3,000 families homeless, the Iraqi Red Crescent Society (IRCS) said on Tuesday."

For all the above and so much more, it should come as little surprise that the Iraqi people still want US forces out of their country.
Editor & Publisher notes the latest polling which "found that 74% of Shiites and 91$ of Sunnis in Iraq want us to leave within a year. The number of Shiites making this call in Baghdad where the U.S. may send more troops to bring order, is even higher (80%). In contrast, earlier this year, 57% of this same group backed an 'open-ended' U.S. stay." Of course, "earlier this year," was prior to the 'crackdown' that only increased the chaos and violence in Baghdad. From World Public Opinion's poll summary: "An analysis of two nationwide polls taken by World Public Opinion.org in Iraq over the past year reveals both a heightened sense of insecurity in Baghdad, which is suffering from a wave of shootings, kidnappings and bombings, and an increasing desire to place some time limit on the presence of foreign troops. Unlike Shias elsewhere, those living in the capital do not favor disarming the militias. Eight out of ten Shias in Baghdad (80%) say they want foreign forces to leave within a year (72% of Shias in the rest of the country), according to a poll conducted by World Public Opinion in September. None of the Shias polled in Baghdad want U.S.-led troops to be reduced only 'as the security situation improves,' a sharp decline from January, when 57 percent of the Shias polled by WPO in the capital city preferred an open-ended U.S presence."

Meanwhile, a summit is expected for this weekend. As
CNN notes, "Syria cut diplomatic ties with Iraq in 1982." They have restored ties and an summit is scheduled this weekend, in Tehran, for leadership from Iraq, Syria and Iran. CBS and AP note Hoshyar Zebari (Foreign Minister of Iraq) declared, "Iraq's flag will fly in the sky of Damascus and Syria's flag will fly in the sky of Baghdad." Jonathan Steele (Guardian of London) reports that Iran's president, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, will meet with Bashar al-Assad (president of Syria) and Jalal Talabani (president of Iraq).

At the start of the month, puppet of the occupation Nouri al-Maliki, demonstrated that there was no freedom of the press (one of the points in the four-point 'plan' that the media avoided covering) by shutting down two television stations. As Riverbend (Baghdad Burning) reported, the crimes of Salahiddin and Zarwra was "showing the pro-Saddam demonstrations." And how's that working out for the puppet? Hannah Allam (McClatchy Newspapers) reports that the latter is back on air, in spite of al-Maliki: "Al-Zawraa's ability to broadcast round the clock in defiance of the government is yet another example of the increasing technological prowess of insurgents and their supporters." Now beamed in from Egypt, Mishaan al-Jubouri tells Allam, "When we were broadcasting in public from inside Iraq, we had to respect Iraqi law. But when the Iraqi government broke the law and closed the channel for no legitimate reason, they turned us into a channel that broadcasts in secrecy."

So the puppet can't improve things. Can anyone?

Seems like I've

been sleeping in
your bed too
Seems like you've
been meaning to
do me harm
But I'll teach my
eyes to see
Beyond these
walls in front of
Someday I'll walk
out of here again
Someday I'll walk
out of here again
Ooh yeah
Ooh Yeah
Ooh Yeah
Ooh Yeah

Who knew Kofi Annan (UN Secretary General) was a Jimmy Cliff fan? He might as well have been singing Jimmy Cliff's song when asked today what he thought of Tony Blair's agreement to the description of "disaster" applied to Iraq?

Kofi Annan: The US in a way is trapped in Iraq, trapped in the sense that it cannot stay and it cannot leave. There are those who maintain that its presence is a problem, and there are those who say that if they leave precipitously, the situation would get worse, and that they should stay on to help calm and stabilize the situation before they leave. I think the US obviously will have to think through this very, very carefully, but the timing of its departure will have to be optimal in the sense that it should not lead to further deterioration of the situation but try and get it into a level that when it leaves, when it withdraws, the Iraqis themselves will be able to continue to maintain a situation that would ensure a reasonable secure environment.

Meanwhile, in legal news from the United States, the
Pendleton Eight is now four-to-four. The eight (one sailor, seven marines) are accused in the April 26th death of Iraqi Hashim Ibrhaim Awad in Hamdania. They are alleged to have kidnapped him from his home (when, supposedly, they couldn't find the person they -- not the military, they -- were after), killing him and then attempting to paint the grandfather as an "insurgent." AP reports that Jerry E. Shumate Jr. "has agreed to plead guilty to lesser charges . . . of aggravated assault and conspiracy to obstruct justice". Mark Walker (North County Times) notes that the other three to plead guilty Tyler Jackson, John Jodka III and Melson Bacos. The remaining four are Lawrence G. Hutchins III, Trent D. Thomas and Marshall L. Magincalda.

Also in the US,
Eric Lichtblau and Mark Mazzetti (New York Times) report on "an anti-terrorist database used by the Defense Department" that was used to track and spy on peace "meetings held at churches, libraries, college campuses and other locations".
Mike noted yesterday (Mikey Likes It!), WBAI's Law and Disorder is doing a four-part series on the police state and, in the most recent installment, they spoke with Konstanty Hordynski of Students Against the War (UC Santa Cruz) whose group was among those spied on by the government. The illegal spying hasn't stopped others from speaking out against the war (or stopped Hordynski or Students Against the War). David H. Price (CounterPunch) reports on the most recent group to approve "resolutions condemning the occupation of Iraq and the use of torture": the American Anthropological Association.

As the calls for the war to end increase all over the world, the dangerous at any location, Bully Boy was in Hawaii today.
CNN notes that "three poplice motorcycles excorting his motorcade crashed on slick pavement and rolled onto a grassy median" -- one is in serious condition, one in stable condition and no word on the third. Wait, there's more. AP reports that Greg Pitts ("acting director of the White House Travel Office") left Bobby G's Dance Club (Waikiki) at two a.m. (just when the Tru Rebels were winding down) and "was robbed and beaten". Dawg House and Coconut Willie's are so close by. But they do have the Monday night jello shots for a buck.

Turning to news of passings. The
BBC reports on the funeral for Walid Hassan, sketch comedy star of the Iraqi TV show Caricature, who was shot dead Monday in Baghdad: "Mr Hassan's coffin was tied to the top of a taxi for the 160km (100 mile) journey from Baghdad to the Shia holy city of Najaf." Meanwhile director Robert Altman (Nashville, M*A*S*H, Short Cuts, The Player, Gosford Park, McCabe & Mrs. Miller, The Long Goodbye, and more) passed away Monday. The 81-year-old Altman was a vocal opponent of the illegal war singing on to the Not In Our Name petition in the fall of 2002 and continuing to speak his mind including while up for an Oscar (Best Director) for Gosford Park in 2003 when he stated "This present government in America I just find disgusting, the idea that George Bush could run a baseball team successfully -- he can't even speak!"



the illustration above goes with 'Justice for Abeer and her family?' (the third estate sunday review). the illustration above, and the other 2, are based on james barker's confession last week that he took part in the rape and murder of abeer. now he didn't shoot her. he just plotted with the others. he says steven green shot her. barker, he just plotted it. it would be fun to kill. fun to rape.
according to him, he and the others at the traffic checkpoint discussed killing abeer's family and decided to just leave their assigned duty and head to abeer's home. 1 man would stand watch outside the home, steven green took the mother, the father and the 5-year-old sister into the bedroom while barker and paul cortez took turns gang raping 14-year-old abeer.
there is no 'alleged' for barker. he confessed in court. he has been sentenced to 90 years but could get out after serving 20.
he confessed that he and his fellow soldiers plotted it and carried out. then they went back and grilled some chicken wings. just another day for them.
abeer is the story of iraq.
before any 1 starts screaming 'oh my god! how dare you say that about all soldiers!' i haven't said it about all soldiers. justin watt did the right thing. when he heard, in may, what happened on march 12th, he reported it.
justin watt's a hero in my opinion.
he's part of the abeer story too.
what happened never should have happened. but it did.
and the reaction is that the press ignores it.
they ignore the confession - where's the firey editorials and op-eds in the new york times expressing outrage (they also ignored covering this story in their print edition) - they ignore justin watt.
americans know little about what happened unless they take it upon themselves to do the work the media should do.
it is the story of iraq.
but the soldiers kidnapped and strung up (and killed) in may, that was done in retaliation of what was done to abeer and her family.
the 1s who were tortured and killed? they had nothing to do with the crimes against abeer.
that's the story of iraq as well.
an illegal war that gives some u.s. soldiers the idea that they can do whatever they want (why not, the bully boy did when he started an illegal war) led to iraqi and american deaths and led to justin watt coming forward only to recieve death threats and the press stays silent.
that's the story of iraq.
and that's why the war was lost long ago.
c.i.'s covering the news of today so i'll scate by on that work; however, i really do want to be sure that every 1 takes a moment to think about abeer, about iraq, about what this represents.
i'd also urge you to use the link provided to watch cbs' face in the nation because rangel's wording is alarming. i understand he's supposed to be making a point about iraq. but his 2nd point is along the lines of 'if we're going to confront syria and iran' - what?
i'm sorry, symbolic or not, i don't think you offer that 'symbolic option' to war mongers.
here's c.i.'s 'Iraq snapshot:'

Monday, November 20, 2006. Chaos and violence continue in Iraq, Ehren Watada's court-martial gets a start date, talk of returning to a draft in the United States, the US military announces more deaths, Bully Boy finds that he's as unpopular in in Indonesia as he is elsewhere, a new military review quickly dispenses any hopes of the illegal war coming to an end, and the November death toll for Iraqis has already surpassed October's toll.

Starting with US war resister
Ehren Watada. In June, Lt. Watada went public with his decision to refuse to deploy to Iraq thereby becoming the first commissioned officer to publicly say no to the illegal war. In August, an Article 32 hearing was held. The US military announced August 24th that the recommandation by the hearing's presiding officer, Lt. Colonel Mark Keith, was to court-martial Watada. Thursday, November 9th, as noted on that day's broadcast of The KPFA Evening News, the Army announced it would court-martial Watada. As Gregg Kakesako (Honolulu Star-Bulletin) reported then, no date had been set but Eric Seitz, the civilian attorney representing Watada, expected the court-martial would be held in 2007. Today, Robert Shikina (Honolulu Star-Bulletin) reports "that Watada's pretrial hering is set for Jan. 4, with the court-martial beginning Feb. 5."

Sunday, the Japanese American Citizens League, Honolulu Chapter, held an symposium
at the University of Hawaii on Watada's decision to refuse to fight in an illegal war. Bob Watada, father of Ehrne, Jon Van Dyke (of the University of Hawaii Richardson School of Law) and attorney Eric Seitz.
Robert Shikina reports that letter from Carolyn Ho, Ehren's mother, was read to those attending: "For some elected officials to claim that this is beyond their purview and Lt. Watada is courageous but should take the consequences for his decision is an outright evasion of responsibility and lack of moral courage." On the same event, Derrick DePledge (Honolulu Advertiser) reports: "Van Dyke and Seitz say the war is illegal under United Nations charter and that Watada was right not to deploy on moral grounds. The U.S., in its justification for war, alleged that Iraq had failed to comply with U. N. disarmament resolutions. The U.S. and its allies discussed a new resolution on the war with the other nations on the U.N. Security Council, but when diplomacy stalled, determined that a new resolution was not required before the 2003 invasion. 'This war cannot be justified -- logically or factually or legally,' Seitz said." Shikina notes 83-year-old John Masunaga's impressions: "'Ehren's standing up for something we all should have stood up for,' he said, noting the internment of Japanese Americans. 'The Time World War II started, we were trying to prove ourselves good loyal citizens. Sometimes you have to speak up and try to right some of the wrongs."

At the gathering, Seitz spoke of the efforts to silence Watada.
Tomorrow (Tuesday) at 9 a.m., Ehren Watada will be participating in a "Tele-news Call" along with Seitz and Bob Watada. More information can be found here. As The Honolulu Advertiser notes, Ehren Watada could be sentenced to up to six years if convicted in the court martial -- six years in a military prison.

Watada is part of a growing resistance to the war within the military. Along with Watada, others standing up publicly include Joshua Key, Kyle Snyder, Ivan Brobeck, Darrell Anderson, Ricky Clousing, Mark Wilkerson, Camilo Meija, Pablo Paredes, Carl Webb, Stephen Funk, David Sanders, Dan Felushko, Brandon Hughey, Jeremy Hinzman, Corey Glass, Patrick Hart, Joshua Casteel, Clifford Cornell, Agustin Aguayo, Joshua Despain, Katherine Jashinski, and Kevin Benderman. And those are only some of the names of those resisting who have gone public. In addition, over thirty US war resisters are currently in Canada attempting to be legally recognized. It is a movement regardless of how it is covered (or, more often, not covered) and regardless of what the likes of
Mommy's Pantyhose may think.

Information on war resistance within the military can be found at
Center on Conscience & War, The Objector, The G.I. Rights Hotline, Soldier Say No! and the War Resisters Support Campaign. Courage to Resist offers information on all public war resisters. Appeal for Redress is collecting signatures of active duty service members calling on Congress to bring the troops home -- the petition will be delivered to Congress in January (on MLK day). One of those organizing Appeal to Redress, Jonathan Hutto, was interviewed by John Catalinotto (Workers World) and explained, noting the MLK memorial, "I am moved by this, by King taking a place where there are memorials to Washington, Lincoln and Jefferson. Theirs were dedicated to presidents. King's is dedicated to justice and peace. That's the vein in which we want to present this appeal."

In Iraq the violence and the chaos continues.


Reuters reports a car bomb in Ramadi that took two lives (plus the occupant of the car) and left six wounded, three more were wounded in Ramadi from a mortar round, in Mosul three Iraqi soliders were killed and four wounded from a car bomb, a roadside bomb in Iskandariya killed two, a roadside bomb in Baghdad killed three (five more wounded), and a second roadside bomb in Baghdad resulted in no known deaths but left two wounded.


Xinhua reports that two professors were shot dead: Ahmed Hamid al-Taie of the Mosul University (killed in Mosul) and Fulayeh al-Ghurabi of the Babil University (killed in Babil).
Over 155 educators have been targeted in killed in Iraq since the illegal war began.
Dahr Jamail and Ali Al-Fadhily (IPS) reported on recent attacks and spoke with "an administration manager of a large university in Baghdad" who told them: "Iraqi universities have turned into militia and death squad headquarters. . . Pictures of clerics and sectarian flags all over are not the only problem, but there is the interference of clerics and their followers in everything [and that clerics can] sack teachers and students, forbid certain texts, impose certain uniforms and ever arrest and kill those who belong to other sects or those who object to their behavior."

In other shootings,
AFP notes that Baquba was the location for where a police officer was shot dead in front of his house, where another police officer "and his personal driver" were shot dead, where "[s]ix civilians were killed in random gunfire" and where an attack on a police patrol resulted in one death and three injured. CBS and AP report that Walid Hassan was shot to death in Baghdad: "a famous comedian on al-Sharquiya TV . . . had performed in a comedy series called 'Caricature,' which mocked coalition forces and the Iraqi government since the U.S.-led invasion of Iraq." Reuters notes that he was shot three times in the head.


Reuters reports that sixty corpses were found in Baghdad, eight in Tikrit and fourteen "south of Baghdad."

AFP reports that, yesterday in Baghdad, "a health official" was abducted and that the kidnapping was confirmed today. BBC notes that it is Ammar Al-Saffar who is Iraq's Deputy Health Minister and: "The Iraqi police say several vehicles pulled up outside Mr Al-Saffar's house in a Sunni neighbourhood of northern Baghdad. Eyewitnesses say they were a mixture of pick-up trucks and police cars. Mr Al-Saffar was taken away by six men wearing military uniforms and three men in suits." Al Jazeera notes that Hakim al-Zamily was targeted (al-Zalimy is also a deputy health minister) and reports he stated: "We as health officials have become a target."

KPFA's The Morning Show today, Alieen Alfandary noted that there have been more than 100 Iraqi deaths since Sunday morning and that toll for November (1370) thus far has already surpassed October's toll (1,216).

US military announced this morning "One Marine assigned to Regimental Combat Team 5 died Sunday from wounds sustained due to enemy action while operating in Al Anbar Province" and they announced "A Soldier from 89th Military Police Brigade was killed by injuries sustained when his vehicle struck an Improvised Explosive Device southeastern Baghdad at approximately 8 p.m. Nov. 18."

In Bogor, Indonesia, the
BBC reports, Bully Boy's photo op with Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono and the greeting was "[h]undreds of protestors" voicing their objection the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan and carrying wanted posters of the Bully Boy. The day prior, similar protests took place in Jakarta. Alexandre Da Silva (Honolulu Star-Bulletin) reports that Bully Boy's next stop is Hickham Air Force Base in Hawaii this evening and "Motorists are warned to avoid any side roads near Hickam and Camp Smith 6 [p.m.] and 8 a.m. tomorrow because of possible delays from road closures".

In other peace news,
Karen Dolan (via The Black Agenda Report) reports on the Cities for Peace success in this month's elections where "162 communities in Wisconsin, Illionis and Massachusetts voted on ballot measures calling for the U.S. to end the Iraq war. In every one of those communities, the measures swept to victory."

That option, ending the war, was considered and dismissed by the Pentagon.
Thomas E. Ricks (Washington Post) reports that the Pentagon has a "closley guarded review" with "three basic options: Send in more troops, shrink the force but stay longer, or pull out". Ricks notes that 'send more' option isn't an option "the study group . . . concluded that there are not enough troops in the U.S. military and not enough effective Iraqi forces".

Flashback to November 16th:

The total number of US troops in Iraq?
According to CBS' David Martin, not enough and never will be based upon John Abizaid's remarks to the Senate yesterday "But when you look at the overall American force poll that's available out there, the ability to sustain that commitment is simply not something that we have right now with the size of the Army and the Marine Corps." Let that sink in. According to Abizaid, a War Hawk who never met a battlefield he didn't go weak-kneed over, there are not enough available foot soldiers in the US army or members of the Marines to do what Abizaid feels needs to be done in Iraq.

Ricks reports the group favors an approach which "calls for cutting the U.S. combat presence in favor of a long-term expansion of the training and advisory efforts. Under this mixture of options, which is gaining favor inside the military, the U.S. presence in Iraq, currently about 140,000 troops, would be boosted by 20,000 to 30,000 for a short period, the officials said."

And the withdrawal option? Off the table. As
Reuters notes, "Mr Bush has adamantly opposed setting a specific timetable for withdrawal" or, one could safely note, withdrawal at all since he's bragged that US troops would still be in Iraq after he was out of the White House.

Kirk Semple (New York Times) reports that Walid al-Moallem, Syria's foreign minister, stated "Sunday that his government was prepared to help stabilize Iraq, and uring a visit . . . [in Iraq] called for a timetable for the withdrawal of American troops, saying that it would help reduce the violence." As the BBC notes, "Britain's Prime Minister, Tony Blair, recently urged US President Georg W Bush to involve Iraq's neighbours, Syria and Iran, in an effort to stabilise the country."

Blair made headlines this weekend as a result of an interview with David Frost for Al Jazeera TV.
Tim Shipman (Daily Mail) reported: "Challenged by veteran interviewer Sir David Frost that the Western invasion of Iraq has 'so far been pretty much of a disaster,' Mr. Blair said: 'It has'." Despite that admission, Blair doesn't believe in withdrawal. Philip Webster (Times of London) notes the admission and ties it with British MP and Blair ally Margaret Hodge's statements last week. As the Guardian of London noted last week, Hodge stated the illegal war was Tony Blair's "big mistake in foreign affairs" that it was exporting "moral imperialism".

From the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Sunday, John Howard, who holds the position of prime minister in Australia and also fills in as "joke of the country" just for kicks, weighed in.
Reuters reports that Howard does not agree it's been a "disaster," "tougher," but not a "disaster." Reuters notes that the "tougher" no "disaster" call by Howard came "on a day [Sunday] in which 50 people have been killed in attacks across Iraq." Tougher, says Howard, not a disaster.

He might consider speaking to person Ali Jasim did.
Jasim (Reuters) reports on Abd al-Sattar Obeid who states, "I'm alone now. I have no sons. . . . Yesterday there was a mourning procession for my son and my brother and his two songs who were killed 40 days ago. In the evening, during the rites, some gunmen arrived, about 20 of them. They didn't bother to mask their faces. They were carrying Kalashnikovs and pistols. I begged them. I told them: 'Please don't kill anyone. We have done nothing. What have we done to deserve this?' But they didn't listen to me. They killed my two other sons and ran."

"Tougher" says John Howard, not "disaster."

Meanwhile, in the United States,
AP reports that War Hawk/War Criminal Henry Kissinger has stated (on the BBC) of the illegal war, "If you mean by 'military victory' an Iraqi government that can be established and whose write runs across the whole country, that gets the civil war under control and sectarian violence under control in a time period that the political processes of the democracies will support, I don't believe that's possible." For any who fell alseep, Kissinger said "no" to military victory in Iraq. Australia's ABC reports that Kissinger "says it is now time to start talking to Iran and Syria to find a way out of Iraq."

Does it feel like we just went in a circle? Back to Iraq and Syria, the puppet of the occupation, Nouri al-Maliki, and the Syrian Foreign Minister Walid al-Muallem are meeting and, as
Xinhua reports, "discussing a range of issues" And Reuters reports that Iraq's president, Jabal Talabani, is due in Tehran to meet with Iran's president, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, this weekend. Though Reuters says there's no word on Syria being included, Al Jazeera reports that Syria's president has been invited and quotes Ali al-Adeeb ("legistlator from the governing Dawa party of Nuri al-Maliki") as saying: "All three countries intend to hold a three-way summit among Iraq, Iran and Syria to discuss the security situation and the repercussions for stability of the region." CNN also reports that the upcoming summit is expected to include Syria.

In US Congressional news,
Charles Bibington (Washington Post) reports that Republican Senator John McCain wants "more U.S. troops in Iraq," while Democratic Senator Carl Levin believes "troop withdrawals must begin within four to six months," and Democratic House Rep. Charles Rangel is calling for a return of the draft and told Face the Nation Sunday, "I will be introducing that bill as soon as we start the new session." On CBS' Face the Nation, Republican Senator Lindsey Graham rejected such a notion but stated "I am willing to send more American troops". Rangel, as host Bob Schieffer pointed out, will chair the House Ways and Means Committee in January. Schieffer asked Rangel, noting that he had called for it before, if he was serious about bringing back the draft?

Rangel: You bet your life, underscore serious. There's no question in my mind that this president and this administration would never have invaded Iraq, especially on the flimsy evidence that was presented to the Congress, if indeed we had a draft. And if members of Congress and the administration thought their kids from their communties would be placed in harm's way. . . . I will be introducing that bill as soon as we start the new session.

Schieffer: You will, you will introduce that bill?

Rangel: You can depend on that. I don't see how anyone can support the war and not support the draft. To do so would be hypocritical.

AP notes that the incoming (in Jan.) House Speaker, Democrat Nancy Pelosi, knows nothing about the draft proposal and would not support it according to incoming (in Jan.) House Majority Leader, Democrat Steny Hoyer.

Finally, on the topic of 'friendly fire,'
on October 6th, an inquest was underway in London into the death of ITN reporter Terry Lloyd in Iraq with witness Nicholas Walshe testifying to seeing Lloyd "shot in the head by US troops as he was driven away from a gunfight." Walshe was only one of many witnesses. No US troops participated. The coroner, Andrew Alker, ruled on October 13th that "Terry Lloyd died following a gunshot wound to the head. The evidence this bullet was fired by the Americans is overwhelming" (CNN). Terry Lloyd's daughter Chelsey was quoted by CNN stating: "They did not come to this inquist to explain their actions. Let them do so in our criminal courts where they are guaranteed to get a fair trial." David Johnson is the deputy US ambassador to England. He is apparently overtaxed and heavily burdened. All the above was over a month ago. The Guardian of London reports that Johnson has stated that he will pass on "[g]overnment concerns about the failure of US soldiers to attend the inquest of British service personnel killed by so-called friendly fire in Iraq". Again, one month after the Lloyd inquest issued its findings, the deput US ambassador to England intends to pass on concerns, weeks after the inquest into the deaths of British soldiers Kevin Main and David Williams.