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Archive for March 5th, 2010

An American Detention Bill You Ought to Read More Carefully

Friday, March 5th, 2010

Look at points three and five of the proposed bill – it  completely contravenes any rational notion of your right to the security of your person. Americans may be held and interrogated indefinitely for any “…ther matters as the President considers appropriate.” That is the fuhrer precept, the vesting of the absolute power to ruin lives in the hands of the president on any arbitrary whim. If this goes through, you have no rights in the US. They may as well rename the office of president to ‘The Decider’.

Related: Obama gives Patriot Act another year with no privacy protections | US Interrogation Squad Doing ‘Scientific Research’ | Crotch bomber bill before Congress: Treat all ‘terrorism suspects’ as enemy combatants. Domestically. | Harkat challenge of security certificate goes to court | Almrei security certificate struck down | Government will review ‘anti-terror’ security certificates: Van Loan | Obama approves new interrogation unit | Tories aim to bring back anti-terrorism provisions | British Terror Bill Divides Labor | More secrecy added to already secret process | Charkaoui set to fight new security certificate law | The New Security Certificate: Rushing injustice through the Senate | New security certificates issued | Court puts security certificates in limbo

Marc Ambinder, The Atlantic Monthly
March 5, 2010

Why is the national security community treating the “Enemy Belligerent, Interrogation, Detention, and Prosecution Act of 2010,” introduced by Sens. John McCain and Joseph Lieberman on Thursday as a standard proposal, as a simple response to the administration’s choices in the aftermath of the Christmas Day bombing attempt? A close reading of the bill suggests it would allow the U.S. military to detain U.S. citizens without trial indefinitely in the U.S. based on suspected activity. Read the bill here, and then read the summarized points after the jump.

According to the summary, the bill sets out a comprehensive policy for the detention, interrogation and trial of suspected enemy belligerents who are believed to have engaged in hostilities against the United States by requiring these individuals to be held in military custody, interrogated for their intelligence value and not provided with a Miranda warning.

(There is no distinction between U.S. persons–visa holders or citizens–and non-U.S. persons.)


Icelanders to vote no on debt deal

Friday, March 5th, 2010

Look up what Birgitta Jonsdottir has to say.

Flashback: Iceland stares into Icesave abyss | EU executive recommends fast-track membership for Iceland | No solution in dispute over Iceland deposits | Iceland sets date for Icesave vote | Iceland says IMF aid likely delayed | Iceland blocks central bank debt repayment deal | Icelandic parliament rolls over, votes for EU membership | Iceland to be fast-tracked into the EU | Iceland’s government collapses | In Iceland, the heat is on | Police fire pepper spray at Iceland protesters | Icelanders storm central bank in protest | Iceland inflation soars to 17.1% | 5 injured during protest in Iceland over economic meltdown

Simon Bowers, the Guardian
March 5, 2010

Icelandic voters are tomorrow expected to deliver a landslide “no” in a referendum over unpopular legislation to repay Britain and the Netherlands after the two nations stepped in to guarantee deposits at failed online bank Icesave.

Polls suggest about 75% of people are expected to vote down the Icesave agreement in tomorrow’s ballot, called after the country’s president refused to accept a deal narrowly passed by the Icelandic parliament.

A no-vote would set Iceland on a potentially disastrous collision course with the international financial markets and further sour relations with the British and the Dutch, who are owed £2.35bn and €1.33bn (£1.2bn) respectively.

Credit ratings agency Moody’s last month warned it might downgrade Iceland’s debt to junk status, as other agencies have, if the latest agreement was defeated in the vote. A failure to reach a deal with Britain and the Netherlands would freeze a $4.75bn (£3.16bn) programme of emergency loans from the International Monetary Fund, neighbouring Nordic states and others.


A Guide to the 9/11 Whistleblowers

Friday, March 5th, 2010

Flashback: Washington Times: Architects for 9/11 Truth Present Petition to Congress | Blair lied and lied again: Mandarins reveal that 10 days before Iraq invasion PM knew Saddam couldn’t use WMDs | Able Danger and DIA had advanced knowledge of 9/11 | A Sibel Edmonds Bombshell — Bin Laden Worked for U.S. Until 9/11 | 9/11 Commission Counsel: Government Agreed to Lie About 9/11 | FDNY Lieutenant Admitted Plan To ‘Take Down’ WTC 7 | Key Witness to WTC 7 Explosions Dead at 53 | US Government Questioned on Forged Letter Linking Saddam to 9/11 | Emergency Official Witnessed Dead Bodies In WTC 7 Prior to Collapse | 9/11 widows call for new investigation after revelations of White House, commission ties | Director of 9/11 commission “secretly spoke with Rove, White House” | Eight U.S. State Department Veterans Challenge the Official Account of 9/11 | Twenty-five U.S. Military Officers Challenge Official Account of 9/11

The Corbett Report
March 5, 2010

When losing a discussion on the facts of 9/11, a so-called 9/11 “debunker” will often rely on an old canard to “prove” that 9/11 could not have been an inside job: “So many people want their quarter hour of fame that even the Men in Black couldn’t squelch the squealers from spilling the beans,” write self-satisfied defenders of the government story. According to the logic of this argument, if there are no 9/11 whistleblowers then 9/11 was not an inside job.

So what if there are 9/11 whistleblowers? What if these whistleblowers come from every level of government and private industry, individuals who have even had their cases vindicated by internal government reports? As you are about to see, there are numerous such whistleblowers and each one is a thorn in the side of those who want to pretend that the 9/11 Commission represents the sum total of knowledge on the 9/11 attacks.

That is precisely why these whistleblowers are not lauded by legislators or trumpeted by the media, but actively suppressed by government officials and the corporate media alike. These courageous insiders have been sidelined, gagged, hounded from their positions and ignored to the point where their stories are virtually unknown among the general public. And that is exactly why it is vital for the alternative media to make these stories known by bypassing the filters and control of the establishment media.


11 More U.S. Airports Get Body Scanners

Friday, March 5th, 2010

Flashback: Exposed: Naked Body Scanner Images Of Film Star Printed, Circulated By Airport Staff | Radiation Safety Group Says Naked Body Scanners Increase Risk Of Cancer | UK: Airline passengers have ‘no right’ to refuse naked body scanners | Full-body scanner blind to bomb parts | Airport scanner companies queue for business after ‘underpants bomber’ | German ‘Fleshmob’ Protests Airport Scanners | Body scanners capable of storing, sending images, group says | Dutch police develop mobile body scans | Whole-body airport scanners are basically safe–or are they? | Airport security starts in the parking lot | Body scanners coming to Canadian airports | UK: New scanners break child porn laws | US implements travel profiling: Tougher air screening for ’security-risk’ countries | UK: Full-body scanners being ordered for airports, says Gordon Brown | Group slams Chertoff on conflict of interest in scanner promotion | The ‘Israelification’ of airports: High security, little bother | Underwear Bomber Renews Calls for ‘Naked Scanners’ | Federal Privacy Commissioner raises alarm over terror security measures | Privacy watchdog OKs ‘naked’ airport scanners | Security may soon test ‘virtual strip search’ at large Canadian aiports | US Border Guards to Expand Use of X-Ray Body Scanners | Homeland Security seeks Bladerunner-style lie detector | Greyhound introduces security screening of passengers, bans fruit, carry-ons | Germany rejects full-body scans at airports | Interpol wants facial recognition database to catch suspects | ‘Pre-crime’ detector shows promise | Eye scans, fingerprints to control NZ borders | Air passengers to undergo ‘virtual strip search’ | US Homeland Security Keen on ‘Novel’ Israeli Airport Security Technology | Israel startup uses behavioral science to identify terrorists | Airport scanner a ‘virtual strip search’

David Kravets,
March 5, 2010

Transportation officials announced Friday 11 more United States airports will begin receiving full-body imaging machines

“By accelerating the deployment of this technology, we are enhancing our capability to detect and disrupt threats of terrorism across the nation,” Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano said in a statement.

Despite concerns of privacy and their effectiveness, the 11 airports are to get the 150 machines beginning Monday at Boston’s Logan International Airport, and one at the O’Hare International Airport in Chicago. In all, 30 U.S. airports will employ the scanning devices.

Fliers declining to submit to the machines that create X-ray-like virtual images of the body may get intense pat-downs from Transportation Security Administration authorities. The combined 150 imaging machines are being bought, in part, by $1 billion the government set aside from its $787 billion federal bailout bill.

The American Civil Liberties Union has decried the scanners as “virtual strip searchs.” The Electronic Privacy Information Center, in a Freedom of Information Act request, said the machines are capable of storing and transmitting images of passengers despite the government’s claim to the contrary.


Pentagon shooter had a history of mental illness

Friday, March 5th, 2010

The CBC/CP in their reposting of this article, and in prior coverage, have been stripping out references to ‘conspiracy theories’ and the 9/11 truth movement. And they are well to do so, since to point to a couple of online postings from 2006 and to highlight concerns Bedell shared with large swathes of the American and Canadian populations as a suggested motivating factor for his suicidal attack on the pentagon is, well, rampant speculation. Why no media highlight of the paranoia and suicidal ideation caused by going off of anti-depressant meds? In light of the fact that the 9/11 truth angle was being widely covered in the American media mere hours after the shootings took place (well before any real police investigation could get underway), it was quite possibly an ideologically motivated propaganda campaign: as PrisonPlanet journos reveal, media mentions of the looming danger of 9/11 truth groups spiked in the weeks prior to the shooting (including in the conservative press), culminating in the release of a major SPLC report conflating populist dissent – constitutionalism, etc. – with skinheads and violent extremism. The CBC omission mentioned above is thus likely well intentioned and appreciated, but in the interest of covering this story completely, StatismWatch has opted to reproduce the text of the original unedited article. Note how the writers throw in a suggestion at the end for the reader to connect recent anti-state lone wolf attacks with ‘radical Islamic extremism’. In the interest, then, of fully examining – or stretching – all parallels between such cases, this journal also feels compelled to include mention of the case of another psychiatric patient engaged in a robotic attack that led to a security crackdown.

Flashback: Gunman shot and killed after shooting 2 Pentagon police officers | Public may not hear fate of Greyhound bus killer | Against protocol, bus decapitation accused released from Ontario institution in 2005 | Bus decapitation accused was guided by voices, trial hears | Greyhound introduces security screening of passengers, bans fruit, carry-ons | Second Greyhound stabbing suspect also required ‘psychological help’, media clamour for airport-style security renewed | Police drop off and pick up new Greyhound knife assault suspect | Greyhound bus passengers now subject to arbitrary luggage searches | ‘Please kill me,’ bus beheading suspect pleads as history of psychiatric treatment surfaces | Psych tests ordered for beheading suspect | Edmonton bus terminal ‘wide open’, security needed: ex-security guard | Bus beheading ‘a mystery’

Tracier Cone, Brooke Donalds, Associated Press
March 5, 2010

The man who opened fire in front of the Pentagon had a history of mental illness and had become so erratic that his parents reached out to local authorities weeks ago with a warning that he was unstable and might have a gun, authorities said Friday.

It’s still unclear why John Patrick Bedell opened fire Thursday at the Pentagon entrance, wounding two police officers before he was fatally shot. The two officers were hospitalized briefly with minor injuries.

Bedell was diagnosed as bipolar, or manic depressive, and had been in and out of treatment programs for years. His psychiatrist, J. Michael Nelson, said Bedell tried to self-medicate with marijuana, inadvertently making his symptoms more pronounced.

Without the stabilizing medication, the symptoms of his disinhibition, agitation and fearfullness complicated the lack of treatment,” Nelson said.

His parents reported him missing Jan. 4, a day after a Texas Highway Patrol officer stopped him for speeding in Texarkana. Bedell told the highway patrolman he was heading to the East Coast, and began acting strangely – sitting on his knees by the side of the highway and turning off his cell phone when it would ring.

Bedell said it was his mother calling, prompting the patrolman to answer the phone and talk briefly with her. Family friend Reb Monaco said Kaye Bedell asked the officer to take him to a mental health facility, but that the son refused.

The patrolman let Bedell go after issuing a speeding ticket and a citation for possession of drug paraphernalia, including a pipe and a green plastic box with marijuana residue.

The next day, Kaye told deputies in California that her son had no reason to travel to the East Coast because he had no friends or family there and she and her husband were worried about his mental state, San Benito County Sheriff Curtis Hill said.


Canada wanted Afghan prisoners tortured: lawyer

Friday, March 5th, 2010

Now it really hits the fan.

Flashback: Harper grilled over prorogation, Afghan detainee torture documents | MP threatens motion on Afghan documents | PM Harper downplays detainee torture scandal, prorogation | Claims troops mistreated prisoners unfounded: military police | Peter MacKay, Red Cross discussed detainees in 2006 | Canada’s troops investigated for Afghan abuse | Colvin disputes witnesses’ detainee testimony | Tories sabotage Afghan committee meeting | Canada ‘defended’ torturer | Ottawa won’t release Afghan torture documents | Top general’s Afghan detainee reversal hikes pressure for public inquiry | Richard Colvin’s Afghan torture memos reveal government concealed prisoner access issues | Torture claims unreliable, officials say, despite having found evidence of torture | MPs vote public inquiry into Afghan detainees, Tories ignore majority motion | Torture claims weren’t probed, official testified | Harper government changes tune on Afghan prisoner issue | Colvin’s testimony true: former Afghan MP | David Mulroney testifies war confused issue of torture | Hillier says he saw no credible reports of torture | Afghan torture emails reached MacKay’s office | Opposition wants documentation prior to government torture rebuttal, PM cries foul | Canadian officials discussed torture in 2006 | Canada shamed on Afghan prisoner torture | Canada ignored torture warnings: Diplomat | Military lawyer stonewalls on Afghan torture claims | Ottawa was warned Afghan detainees might be tortured | Military commission suspends torture hearings, gags witness | Torture probe delayed; Tories deny gagging witness | Federal court limits Afghan detainee torture probe | Watchdog rejects government bid to delay Afghan detainee inquiry | Ottawa moves to block Afghanistan detainee torture hearings again | Bid to Block Afghan Detainee Inquiry Slammed | What Ottawa doesn’t want you to know: Government was told detainees faced ‘extrajudicial executions, disappearances, torture and detention without trial’

CBC News
March 5, 2010

Unredacted documents show officials hoped to gather intelligence, expert says

University of Ottawa law professor Amir Attaran says Canadian officials intentionally handed over Afghan detainees to be tortured in order to gather intelligence. (CBC)

Federal government documents on Afghan detainees suggest that Canadian officials intended some prisoners to be tortured in order to gather intelligence, according to a legal expert.

If the allegation is true, such actions would constitute a war crime, said University of Ottawa law professor Amir Attaran, who has been digging deep into the issue and told CBC News he has seen uncensored versions of government documents released last year.

“If these documents were released [in full], what they will show is that Canada partnered deliberately with the torturers in Afghanistan for the interrogation of detainees,” he said.

“There would be a question of rendition and a question of war crimes on the part of certain Canadian officials. That’s what’s in these documents, and that’s why the government is covering up as hard as it can.”

Detainee abuse became the subject of national debate last year after heavily redacted versions of the documents were made public after Attaran filed an access to information request. They revealed the Canadian military was not monitoring detainees who had been transferred from Canadian to Afghan custody. It was later alleged that some of those detainees were being mistreated.

Until now, the controversy has centred on whether the government turned a blind eye to abuse of Afghan detainees.


Military trials possible for Sept. 11 terror suspects

Friday, March 5th, 2010

The system eats its own.

Flashback: Alleged 9/11 mastermind to go on trial in NYC | CIA waterboarded 2 al-Qaida suspects 266 times | Sept. 11 suspects want to “confess” | Guantanamo 9/11 suspects on trial

Jennifer Loven, Associated Press
March 5, 2010

Senior officials say White House advisers are close to recommending military tribunals for self-professed 9/11 mastermind and four alleged henchmen

In a potential reversal, White House advisers are close to recommending that U.S. President Barack Obama opt for military tribunals for self-professed Sept. 11 mastermind Khalid Sheik Mohammed and four of his alleged henchman, senior officials said.

The review of where and how to hold a Sept. 11 trial is not over, so no recommendation is yet before the president and Mr. Obama has not made a determination of his own, officials said. The review is not likely to be finished this week.

Officials spoke Thursday on condition of anonymity because they weren’t authorized to discuss private deliberations.

Attorney General Eric Holder decided in November to transfer Mr. Mohammed and the four other accused terrorists from the prison at the U.S. naval base at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, to New York City for civilian trials. That was initially supported by city officials, but was later opposed because of costs, security and logistical concerns.

When opposition ballooned further into Congress and an attempted Christmas airline bombing brought massive scrutiny to Mr. Obama’s terrorism policies, the administration said it would review Mr. Holder’s trial decision and consider all options for a new location.


EU considers general carbon tax

Friday, March 5th, 2010

Bank tax, carbon tax – the globalists don’t care, as long as they can bring some kind of fraudulent global tax in – piecemeal and region by region if need be.

Flashback: Leaked UN Documents Reveal Plan For “Green World Order” By 2012 | French Carbon Tax Law Struck Down | Copenhagen climate summit: plan for EU to police countries’ emissions | Copenhagen Accord Establishes Global Government Framework | Final Copenhagen Text Includes Global Transaction Tax | IMF could fund climate adaptation: Soros | UK energy smart meter roll-out is outlined | UK: Brown proposes global fund to kick-start Copenhagen climate change process | Leaked G20 Documents Shed Light on Global Carbon Tax | Everyone in Britain could be given a personal ‘carbon allowance’ | Czech President: Copenhagen to be ‘Largest tax increase in world history’ | Friends of the Earth attacks carbon trading as banker scam | Oil Companies Support Global Warming Alarmists, Not Skeptics | Copenhagen, carbon, and the global corporate agenda | Sarkozy launches carbon tax to help ’save the human race’ | Ontario unveils cap-and-trade legislation | Google PowerMeter to track home energy usage in Toronto test drive | NRTEE Carbon Market Panel is ‘Round Table on Socialist Planning’ | Climate panel presses for federal cap-and-trade system | U.N. ‘Climate Change’ Plan Would Likely Shift Trillions to Form New World Economy | U.N. Environment Head Wants Global Warming Tax | Ontario joins continental WCI cap-and-trade scheme | B.C. carbon tax kicks in on Canada Day | They call it cap and trade, but it’s just another fuel tax | Quebec, Ontario sign historic climate pact | Every adult in Britain should be forced to carry ‘carbon ration cards’, say MPs | CEOs call for ‘aggressive’ action on climate change

BBC News
March 5, 2010

The European Commission is planning an EU-wide minimum tax on carbon as part of the EU’s green energy agenda – but the UK opposes such a move.

The minimum tax would apply to fuel, natural gas and coal.

The EU’s new Taxation Commissioner, Algirdas Semeta, is working to revise the EU’s existing Energy Taxation Directive, his spokeswoman said.

Carbon taxes already exist in EU members Sweden, Finland and Denmark. In France the idea is being hotly debated.

Responding to the EU plan on Thursday a UK government spokeswoman said: “We do not support the idea of a mandatory pan-European carbon tax.

“The existing Energy Taxation Directive gives member states the flexibility to introduce a carbon tax if they wish.

“We believe that member states are best placed to choose the policy tools for achieving their climate change objectives.”

In Brussels earlier this week, Commissioner Semeta said the adoption of carbon taxes “on a larger, European scale seems desirable, as they would undoubtedly encourage innovation to strengthen energy efficiency and environmental protection“.


Ontario in no rush to sell Crown assets, minister says

Friday, March 5th, 2010

Privatizing things like the LCBO would have been a good thing. Where you run into trouble is when you discover that any new private owner would have continued to enjoy the government monopoly – that’s the real definition of economic fascism, folks – and that Goldman Sachs would have been in charge of the deal. How much ROI would the taxpayer have realized on all the investment that’s been dumped into this institution? Good riddance to that deal (for now).

Flashback: Ontario Premiere McGuinty heralds Samsung ‘green energy’ deal | Ont. deficit could linger for years: McGuinty | Ontario eyes sale of crown corporations | HST bill passes, 13% tax starts July 1 | Poll: HST equals Hated Sales Tax | Flaherty eyes sale of Canadian government assets | Cities Debate Giving Away Public Infrastructure to Bankers

Karen Howlett, The Globe and Mail
March 5, 2010

Finance Minister Dwight Duncan gives preview of Liberal Throne Speech, budget

The cash-strapped Ontario government has no plans to announce the sale of any iconic Crown assets this year, Finance Minister Dwight Duncan said Friday.

During a speech on Friday to the Canadian Club in Toronto, Mr. Duncan provided some hint of what to expect in his budget later this month as well as Monday’s Speech from the Throne.

“The upcoming Throne Speech and Budget will not announce the sale of any asset we currently own,” he bluntly stated.

Just three months ago, Mr. Duncan said the government was in the process of hiring two investment banks to study the possible sale of taxpayer-owned companies, including the provincial lottery corporation, its power generation company, the power distribution company and the retail monopoly on liquor sales.

But he said on Friday that the government is in no rush to do anything as it is examines “new models” for maximizing the value of its Crown assets while at the same time protecting and preserving the public interest.


Athens erupts as Greek austerity plan passes

Friday, March 5th, 2010

Flashback: Greece unveils radical austerity package | Athen’s coffers to run dry in two weeks, more cracks appear in Eurozone | Man who broke the Bank of England, George Soros, ‘at centre of hedge funds plot to cash in on fall of the euro’ | Goldman role in Greek crisis probed | Greek workers stage general strike | How EU Countries Cooked Books Using Derivatives | Goldman Sachs Helped Greece Obscure Debt Through Currency Swaps | Collapse of the euro is ‘inevitable’: Bailing out the Greek economy futile, says French banking chief | Euro currency union shows strains | Stimulating our way into debt crises | EU leaders reach secret Greek bailout deal | Will Greece set off ‘global debt bomb’? | EU cautions Greece about its deficit | Could Greece drag down Europe? | ‘Significant chance’ of second financial crisis, warns World Economic Forum | A world awash in debt

The Associated Press
March 5, 2010

The Greek parliament approved new spending cuts and taxes Friday aimed at defusing the country’s debt crisis, while protesters fought with police in the streets of Athens.

The violence came as Prime Minister George Papandreou went abroad to seek European leaders’ support for his efforts to address the country’s debt crisis.

He met in Luxembourg with Prime Minister Jean-Claude Juncker, head of the group of eurozone finance ministers, and was scheduled to meet with German Chancellor Angela Merkel in Berlin later in the day.

In Athens, riot police used tear gas and baton charges to disperse rioters who chased the ceremonial guards in 19th-century kilts and tasselled garters away from the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier outside the parliament, while a top trade union leader was roughed up by left-wing protesters.

It was the biggest outburst of violence since Greece’s debt crisis escalated late last year. Police say they arrested five people, and seven officers were injured.