Sibel Edmonds case: The real culprits of 9-11 by lukery

by Luke Ryland
featured writer
Dandelion Salad

Sibel Edmonds case: The real culprits of 911

Former FBI translator Sibel Edmonds has made a number of disturbing claims about the 911 attacks, but perhaps the most disconcerting is her oft-repeated statement that the US authorities have covered up an entire organizational layer within al-Qaeda.

In the documentary, Kill The Messenger, Sibel says:

“They haven’t mentioned anybody who actually is connected to Al Qaida, in mid or higher level.”

Similarly, Sibel often says:

“And I would like to give an analogy – if you take the War on Drugs, imagine if they only went after street dealers and they refused to investigate the mid-level dealers or the drug lords. This is very similar.”

As we approach another 911 anniversary, it’s time we learnt:
1) Who are these mid and high-level al-Qaida operatives?
2) What role did they play in planning 911?
3) What operational support did they provide?
4) Why they are still roaming free today?
5) Why did the US authorities continually exclude key participants from the official narrative?


Sibel Edmonds is the most gagged woman in US history making it a little it difficult for us, the public, to have a detailed understanding of everything she knows about al-Qaida and the 911 attacks, but she has given interviews and written a number of great articles and letters which enable us to put some of the pieces together.

Immediately after the release of the 911 Commission report, Sibel wrote an open letter to Thomas Kean and the Commission in which she chided the 911 Commission panel for ignoring important issues related to the attacks, and she also made public some of her closed-door testimony to the 911 Commission.

For example, in that letter, Sibel identified specific warnings from April 2001 that:

“1) Osama bin Laden was planning a major terrorist attack in the United States targeting four or five major cities;
2) the attack was going to involve airplanes;
3) some of the individuals in charge of carrying out this attack were already in place in the United States;
4) the attack was going to be carried out soon, in a few months.”

As we all know, this information was not included in the Commission report, and was barely mentioned in the US media even though it was confirmed in the Chicago Tribune and FBI Director Robert Mueller was surprised that he wasn’t asked about it by the 911 Commission. In fact, according to Sibel,

“(A)fter 9/11 the agents and the translators were told to “keep quiet” regarding this issue.”

More importantly, for today’s purposes, I want to focus on this statement from the same letter:

“The public has still not been told of the intentional obstruction of intelligence. The public has not been told that certain information, despite its relevance to terrorist activities, is not shared with counterterrorism units. This was true prior to 9/11, and it remains true today. If counterintelligence receives information about terrorism that implicates certain nations, semi-legit organizations or the politically powerful in this country, then that information is not shared with counterterrorism, regardless of the consequences. In certain cases, frustrated FBI agents have cited “direct pressure by the State Department.” The Department of Justice Inspector General received detailed evidence regarding this issue. I provided your investigators with an account of this issue, the names of other witnesses willing to corroborate this, and the names of U.S. officials involved in these transactions and activities.”

In order to understand this, we need to understand a little bit about how the FBI operates. ‘Counterintelligence’ (CI) is essentially a monitoring organization which routinely investigates various groups – such as embassies, and groups like AIPAC and the American Turkish Council (ATC) – which might be involved in criminal activity, or otherwise might be able to provide valuable information. If and when CI comes across evidence of criminality, they are supposed to forward that information and evidence to other divisions of the FBI which have the authority, and responsibility, to act on the information and arrest the guilty parties. Typically the cases will be forwarded to, for example, Public Corruption, or Narcotics, or in this case, Counter Terrorism (CT).

As Sibel indicates, prior to 911, the State Department put pressure on people at FBI HQ to block the transfer of certain cases to the actionable divisions within the FBI. Outrageously, even immediately after 911, the State Department continued to refuse CI permission to pass significant information to Counter-terrorism that was directly relevant to the 911 attacks. In other words, while the Bush administration was rushing through the PATRIOT ACT, rounding up thousands of ‘suspects’ and gutting the Constitution, the State Department was protecting many of the key participants in the mass murder on 9/11 in order to protect ‘sensitive diplomatic relations.’

Here’s Sibel describing the cover-up:

“What occurred with the 911 related investigation – be it the FBI, or the Department of Defense, or the Department of State, or the CIA or the Pentagon – they choose to basically publicize the deal at the hijacker level – and completely went about covering up certain entities that they had DIRECT evidence, DOCUMENTED evidence of the support networks – be it the financial support networks, or communications, or obtaining visas – they have not touched those individuals. Those individuals are still roaming free! Today!”

And here’s Sibel again, making the same point:

“I will give you an analogy, okay? Say if we decided to have a “war on drugs,” but said in the beginning, “right, we’re only going to go after the young black guys on the street level…” But we decided never to go after the middle levels, let alone the top levels…

It’s like this with the so-called war on terror. We go for the Attas and Hamdis – but never touch the guys on the top.”

Which people are Sibel talking about?
Sibel is talking about three different, though often over-lapping, groups of: a) Those who were directly involved in planning and/or facilitating the 911 attacks, b) Those who knowingly, specifically, intentionally provided and facilitated ‘indirect’ support functions for the attacks c) Those who support and finance al-Qaeda generally.

Let’s begin at the highest level. In Sibel’s “THE HIGHJACKING OF A NATION – Part 1” she quotes Senator Bob Graham’s numerous statements that Saudi Arabia’s support for some of the 911 hijackers has been hidden in the redacted 27 pages of the congressional inquiry’s final report into 911. Sibel notes:

“What Graham is trying to establish in his book and previous public statements in this regard, and doing so under state imposed ‘secrecy and classification’, is that the classification and cover up of those 27 pages is not about protecting ‘U.S. national security, methods of intelligence collection, or ongoing investigations,’ but to protect certain U.S. allies. Meaning, our government put the interests of certain foreign nations and their U.S. beneficiaries far above its own people and their interests. While Saudi Arabia has been specifically pointed to by Graham, other countries involved have yet to be identified.” (emphasis mine)

In various other interviews and articles, Sibel gives us some clues as to which ‘other countries’ she is pointing to. For example, in this 2006 interview, Sibel says

We’re not just talking about – as they say – Saudi Arabia and Egypt – but they have glossed over the involvement of certain entities within other countries – such as Turkey, Pakistan, Azerbaijan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan – many Central Asian countries.

They have absolutely covered up the involvement of certain entities – it’s not necessarily only governmental – from these other countries – Central Asia – they call it “Sensitive Diplomatic Relations’ – you know they are putting (military) bases there.

Please note that not only is the US establishing military bases in these countries, these countries are generally:
1) Major customers for US military hardware
2) US ‘allies’
3) Anti-democracy, anti-freedom, police states
4) Major players in the heroin trade
5) Supporters of various terrorist activity

Sibel describes the US’ hypocrisy (if that’s the correct descriptor), particularly as it relates to Turkey, in The Highjacking of a Nation: Part 2:

“Curiously enough, despite these highly publicized reports and acknowledgments of Turkey’s role in these activities (Ed: nuclear black market, heroin trafficking, illegal arms sales), Turkey continues to receive billions of dollars of aid and assistance annually from the United States. With (Turkey’s) highly placed co-conspirators and connections within the Pentagon, State Department and U.S. Congress, Turkey never has to fear potential sanctions or meaningful scrutiny; just like Saudi Arabia and Pakistan. The criminal Turkish networks continue their global criminal activities right under the nose of their protector, the United States, and neither the catastrophe falling upon the U.S. on September Eleven, nor their direct and indirect role and ties to this terrorist attack, diminish their role and participation in the shady worlds of narcotics, money laundering and illegal arms transfer.

The ‘respectable’ Turkish companies established and operate bases in Azerbaijan, Uzbekistan and other similar former Soviet states. Many of these front companies, disguised under construction and tourism entities, have received millions of dollars in grants from the U.S. government, allocated to them by the U.S. congress, to establish and operate criminal networks throughout the region; among their networking partners are Al Qaeda, the Taliban, and the Albanian Mafia. While the U.S. government painted Islamic charity organizations as the main financial source for Al Qaeda terrorists, it was hard at work trying to cover up the terrorists’ main financial source: narcotics and illegal arms sales. Why?” (emphasis mine)

In summary, certain US allies protect a bunch of organizations which support al Qaeda and the Taliban. Despite this, these organizations, and their host countries, are protected by the US government under the guise of protecting ‘sensitive diplomatic relations’ and “protecting certain foreign business relations.”

When Sibel first began claiming publicly that the US was covering up the role of certain allies in 911, her claims sounded so outrageous that she was largely dismissed. In 2007 it has become accepted fact. For example, when Presidential hopeful Barack Obama states that Pakistan, a US ally, is protecting Osama bin Laden, there is no about about whether this is true or not, only what to do about it. Similarly, Senator Bob Graham says in his book: “It was as if the President’s loyalty lay more with Saudi Arabia than with America’s safety.”

Some Specific Examples of Hiding the Culprits
In this section, I’ll take a look at some examples of organizations and individuals that were believed by the FBI to have played roles in 911 but have escaped any accountability.

American Turkish Council (ATC)
The ATC is a mini-AIPAC – a lobbying group where Turkey’s business and military leaders interface with America’s finest; current politicians from both parties, CEOs from the Military Industrial Complex (MIC), and former high-level officials acting as lobbyists. The ATC was being monitored by FBI counterintelligence (as well as CIA counterintelligence (Brewster Jennings)) and much of the information that Sibel learned is believed to have come from the surveillance of the ATC. Sibel says that the ATC is essentially a front organization for various criminal activity – ranging from nuclear black market, heroin trafficking and illegal arms sales – and was being “monitored in a 9/11 investigation.”

Despite the ATC’s role in all of this criminal activity, it is demonstrably untouchable and is alive and well today. In fact, Sibel goes as far as to say that the ATC is basically a representative arm of the U.S. government, lobbyists, foreign agents, and the MIC. It’s not a surprise, therefore, that the ATC has some type of informal ‘protected’ status, and that the FBI can’t act on any of the information uncovered in any of the counter-intelligence operations.

Melek Can Dickerson
Dickerson joined the FBI in October 2001 as a Turkish translator. She had previously worked at the ATC and two other organizations that were the targets of FBI counterintelligence. Almost immediately, Dickerson began engaging in various espionage activities including attempting to recruit Sibel and other translators into the espionage ring, intentionally covering up FBI evidence which implicated her friends at the ATC and elsewhere, stealing documents and leaking them to her friends, and falsifying “top-secret documents related to 9/11 detainees” in an attempt to falsely exonerate her guilty associates.

Sibel’s claims regarding Dickerson were investigated and validated by the FBI. Remarkably, Dickerson was allowed to keep her Top Secret clearance, and was allowed to continue translating Top Secret information regarding her friends and associates, including 911 investigations, for another 6 months until she fled the US.

Top Targets of 911 Investigation
Melek Can Dickerson and her husband, USAF Major Doug Dickerson, offered to introduce Sibel to some of their friends, including two Turkish guys who belonged to the ATC and worked out of the Turkish embassy in DC. According to Sibel, “These two people were the top targets of our investigation!”

For one reason or other, these two (and maybe more) “top targets” of the 911 investigation were allowed to leave the US in mid-2002 without ever having even been interviewed. Prior to Robert Mueller’s testimony at the 911 Commission, Sibel prepared a list of questions for the Commissioners to ask Mueller including:

“Director Mueller, is it true that several top targets of FBI investigations, related to support networks of terrorist activities, were allowed to leave the United States, months after the 9-11 attacks, without ever being questioned? Why?”

That question remains unanswered.

“Blueprints, pictures and building material for skyscrapers”
Another case that was apparently ignored by the US authorities was a mid-2001 wiretap that Sibel translated of a prisoner who had been arrested on narcotics charges. The FBI agents suspected that he might be involved in terrorism-related activity and wiretapped his phone calls from prison. In one phone call, this individual organized for blueprints, photos & details of the building material of the World Trade Center to be sent to (presumably) the authors of the 911 atacks who were hiding in a remote border location somewhere in the Middle East. The wiretap also “revealed illegal activities in obtaining visas from certain embassies in the Middle East through network contacts and bribery.”

Immediately after 911, another wiretap captured this same individual congratulating an associate on the successful attack.

Who was this individual? Who did he phone to deliver the blueprints? Was he a mastermind of 911? Was he acting on his own initiative? If not, at whose behest (and why was he doing from jail?)? Who was he congratulating? We don’t know the answer to any of these questions.

In fact, in July 2002, FBI Director Robert Mueller “maintained… that the 19 al-Qaida hijackers operated independently in the U.S. and were an isolated case” telling the joint congressional 911 inquiry:

“As far as we know, the (hijackers) contacted no known terrorist sympathizers in the United States,”

Mueller was effectively lying (although he may have technically given himself wiggle-room). As Sibel said, the US authorities

“completely went about covering up certain entities that they had DIRECT evidence, DOCUMENTED evidence of the support networks – be it the financial support networks, or communications, or obtaining visas… They have absolutely covered up the involvement of certain entities – it’s not necessarily only governmental – from these other countries”

Of course, it’s not just Mueller who knows what Sibel knows. I’ll finish with two more quotes. The first is from an interview with Chris Deliso

Deliso: You think they [the government] know who they are, the top guys, and where?

Sibel: Oh yeah, they know.

Deliso: So why don’t they get them?

Sibel: It’s like I told you before – this would upset “certain foreign relations.” But it would also expose certain of our elected officials, who have significant connections with high-level drugs- and weapons-smuggling – and thus with the criminal underground, even with the terrorists themselves.
And finally, in Kill The Messenger, Sibel says:

“I am not the only one who knows about this. Too many people know this!

The fraudulent 9/11 Commissioners, every single one of them knows about my case and the details, and the names, and all the specifics.

Several people within the U.S Congress do know.

Everybody in the FBI, involved, they know!

Everybody in Department of Justice, they know!

My goal has been exposing the criminal activities: money laundering, narcotic activities, and nuclear black market, converging with terrorist activities.

Put out the tapes, put out the wiretaps! Put out those documents! Put out the truth! The truth is going to hurt them, the truth is going to set me free!

Everybody knows except us.

It’s time we knew.

Let Sibel Edmonds Speak
Call Embarrass Waxman. Demand public open hearings:
DC phone: (202) 225-3976
LA phone: 323 651-1040
Capitol switchboard phone: 800-828-0498

Debate Essential To Arab-Israeli Peace By Amy Goodman (Jimmy Carter)

Dandelion SaladBy Amy Goodman
09/14/07 “Seattle Post-Intelligencer

I sat down with former President Carter last week at the Carter Center in Atlanta. The center was hosting a conference of human-rights defenders, people at the front lines confronting repressive regimes around the globe. After a quarter-century of humanitarian work through the Carter Center, monitoring elections, working to eradicate neglected tropical diseases and focusing on the poor, Jimmy Carter now finds himself at the center of the storm in the Israel-Palestine conflict.

After more than three decades of work on the Middle East, Carter released a book titled “Palestine: Peace Not Apartheid.” The book’s title alone has created a furor. But Carter is undeterred:

“The word ‘apartheid’ is exactly accurate. This is an area that’s occupied by two powers. They are now completely separated. Palestinians can’t even ride on the same roads that the Israelis have created or built in Palestinian territory. The Israelis never see a Palestinian, except the Israeli soldiers. The Palestinians never see an Israeli, except at a distance, except the Israeli soldiers. So within Palestinian territory, they are absolutely and totally separated, much worse than they were in South Africa, by the way. And the other thing is, the other definition of ‘apartheid’ is, one side dominates the other. And the Israelis completely dominate the life of the Palestinian people.”

Carter lays much of the blame for the lack of momentum toward a solution on the absence of debate in the U.S.: “It’s a terrible human-rights persecution that far transcends what any outsider would imagine. And there are powerful political forces in America that prevent any objective analysis of the problem in the Holy Land. I think it’s accurate to say that not a single member of Congress with whom I’m familiar would possibly speak out and call for Israel to withdraw to their legal boundaries or to publicize the plight of the Palestinians or even to call publicly and repeatedly for good faith peace talks.”

As president, Carter brokered the 1978 Camp David Peace Accords, creating a lasting peace between Israel and Egypt. President Clinton, who officiated over the failed 2000 Camp David Summit between Israel and the Palestinians, has been highly critical of Carter’s perspective. Clinton blames the Palestinian leadership for rejecting Israel’s “generous offer.” It’s interesting that Israel’s chief negotiator, former Foreign Minister Shlomo Ben-Ami, told me in 2006, “If I were a Palestinian, I would have rejected Camp David as well.”

While we were in Atlanta, DePaul University in Chicago reached a settlement with professor Norman Finkelstein. Despite hailing him as a “prolific scholar and an outstanding teacher,” DePaul denied him tenure, many believe because of his outspoken criticism of Israeli policy toward Palestinians. The son of Holocaust survivors himself, Finkelstein has been praised by leading scholars.

Just months before he died, Raul Hilberg, revered founder of the field of Holocaust studies, praised Finkelstein’s work: “That takes a great amount of courage. His place in the whole history of writing history is assured and that those who in the end are proven right triumph, and he will be among those who will have triumphed, albeit, it so seems, at great cost.”

Open debate on Israel-Palestine should not come at such a high cost. It is essential to Middle East peace. The Iraq Study Group, in its bipartisan Baker-Hamilton Report, stated, “The United States will not be able to achieve its goals in the Middle East unless the United States deals directly with the Arab-Israeli conflict.”

Carter’s book cover has a picture of the “Separation Barrier.” Israel originally designed the wall to run along the internationally recognized 1967 border. Carter noted that Israel decided to “move the wall from the Israeli border to intrude deeply within Palestine to carve out some of that precious land for the Israeli settlers to occupy.” The International Court of Justice has ruled it illegal. It is more than half completed, with plans to snake more than 400 miles, mainly through the West Bank. In places the wall is more than 25 feet high and made of concrete.

Carter describes it as “much worse” than the Berlin Wall. Elder Israeli peace activist Uri Avnery writes:

“When my friends fall prey to despair, I show them a piece of painted concrete, which I bought in Berlin. It is one of the remnants of the Berlin Wall, which are on sale in the city. I tell them that I intend, when the time comes, to apply for a franchise to sell pieces of the Separation Wall.”

That barrier stands in the United States as well — metaphorically — around any kind of rational debate for a fair and just solution in the Middle East. My suggestion: Tear down that wall.

Amy Goodman is the host of “Democracy Now!,” a daily international TV/radio news hour airing on 500 stations in North America.

© 2007 Amy Goodman; distributed by King Features Syndicate
FAIR USE NOTICE: This blog may contain copyrighted material. Such material is made available for educational purposes, to advance understanding of human rights, democracy, scientific, moral, ethical, and social justice issues, etc. This constitutes a ‘fair use’ of any such copyrighted material as provided for in Title 17 U.S.C. section 107 of the US Copyright Law. This material is distributed without profit.

9/11 Explains the Impotence of the Anti-war Movement By Paul Craig Roberts

Dandelion Salad

By Paul Craig Roberts
09/14/07 “

The anti-war movement has proven impotent to stop the war in Iraq despite the fact that the war was initiated on the basis of lies and deception. The anti-war movement stands helpless to prevent President Bush from attacking Iran or any other country that he might demonize for harboring a future 9/11 threat.

September 11 enabled Bush to take America to war and to keep America at war even though the government’s explanation of the events of September 11 is mired in controversy and disbelieved by a large percentage of the population.

Although the news media’s investigative arm has withered, other entities and individuals continue to struggle with unanswered questions. In the six years since 9/11, numerous distinguished scientists, engineers, architects, intelligence officers, pilots, military officers, air traffic controllers, and foreign dignitaries have raised serious and unanswered questions about the official story line.

Recognition of the inadequacy of the official account of the collapse of the twin towers is widespread in the scientific and technical community. One of the most glaring failures in the official account is the lack of an explanation of the near free-fall speed at which the buildings failed once the process began. Some scientists and engineers have attempted to bolster the official account with explanations of how this might happen in the absence of explosives used in controlled demolitions.

One recent example is the work of Cambridge University engineer, Dr. Keith Seffen, published in the Journal of Engineering Mechanics and reported by the BBC on September 11, 2007. Dr. Seffen constructed a mathematical model that concludes that once initiation of failure had begun, progressive collapse of the structures would be rapid.

Another example is the work of retired government scientist Dr. Manuel Garcia, commissioned by CounterPunch to fill the gaping void in the official report. Garcia concludes, as does Seffen, that explosives are not necessary to explain the near free-fall speed at which the WTC buildings collapsed.

Seffen and Garcia each offer a speculative hypothesis about what could have happened. Their accounts are not definitive explanations based on evidence of what did happen. Thus, Seffen and Garcia bring us to the crux of the matter: To understand the buildings’ failures, we must rely on theoretical speculative models, because the forensic evidence was not examined. Their explanations thus have no more validity than a speculative hypothesis that explains the failure of the buildings as a result of explosives.

To rationally choose between the hypotheses, we would need to see how well each fits with the evidence, but most of the evidence was quickly dispersed and destroyed by federal authorities. Most of the evidence that remains consists largely of human testimony: the hundred witnesses who were inside the two towers and who report hearing and experiencing explosions and the televised statement of Larry Silverstein, the leaseholder of the WTC properties, who clearly said that the decision was made “to pull” WTC 7.

Today, six years after 9/11, money, ideologies, accumulated resentments, and political careers are all allied with the official story line on 9/11. Anyone on a Republican mailing list or a conservative activist list, such as Young Americans for Freedom, knows that fundraising appeals seldom fail to evoke the 9/11 attack on America. The 9/11 attacks gave neoconservatives their “new Pearl Harbor” that enabled them to implement their hegemonic agenda in the Middle East. The 9/11 attacks gave Americans boiling with accumulated frustrations a foe upon whom to vent their rage. Politicians, even Democrats, could show that they stood tall for America. George W. Bush has invested two presidential terms in “fighting terror” by invading countries in the Middle East.

September 11 doubters are a threat to the legitimacy of these massive material and emotional interests. That is why they are shouted down as “conspiracy theorists.” But if the government’s story has to be improved by outside experts in order to be plausible, then it is not irrational or kooky to doubt the official explanation.

Elements of the American left-wing are also frustrated by 9/11 doubters. CounterPunch, for example, views 9/11 as blowback from an immoral US foreign policy and as retribution for America’s past sins in the Middle East. Manuel Garcia shares this viewpoint. In the September 12, 2007, CounterPunch, Garcia writes that “rationalists and realists” are people who see 9/11 “as blowback from decades of inhuman US foreign policy.” Viewing 9/11 as a government conspiracy lets US foreign policy off the hook.

This is a legitimate point of view. But it has a downside. September 11 was the excuse for committing yet more inhuman deeds by initiating open-ended wars on both Muslims and US civil liberties. Defending the government’s account, instead of pressing the government for accountability, was liberating for the Bush administration.

Even in the official account, the story is one of massive failures: the failures of US intelligence services, the failures of airport security, the failures to intercept the hijacked airliners, the failures to preserve evidence. If a common front had taken the Bush administration to task both for failing to prevent the 9/11 attacks and for an explanation of 9/11 so inadequate that its plausibility depends on outside experts, Bush could not have so easily shifted the blame to Afghanistan and Iraq. Most 9/11 doubters do not insist on the US government’s complicity in the deed. Failure to protect, or incompetence, is a sufficient charge to deter an administration from war by turning it against itself with demands for accountability.

But no one was held accountable for 9/11 except Muslim countries. This is the reason the anti-war movement is impotent.

Paul Craig Roberts was Assistant Secretary of the Treasury in the Reagan Administration. He is the author of Supply-Side Revolution : An Insider’s Account of Policymaking in Washington; Alienation and the Soviet Economy and Meltdown: Inside the Soviet Economy, and is the co-author with Lawrence M. Stratton of The Tyranny of Good Intentions : How Prosecutors and Bureaucrats Are Trampling the Constitution in the Name of Justice.

FAIR USE NOTICE: This blog may contain copyrighted material. Such material is made available for educational purposes, to advance understanding of human rights, democracy, scientific, moral, ethical, and social justice issues, etc. This constitutes a ‘fair use’ of any such copyrighted material as provided for in Title 17 U.S.C. section 107 of the US Copyright Law. This material is distributed without profit.


9-11, Six Years Later By Paul Craig Roberts

Colbert Compares the GOP to Klingons (video)

Dandelion Salad

Posted by Adam Howard at 6:02 AM on September 14, 2007.

Stephen Colbert weighs in on a spat between Ron Paul and Mike Huckabee, and finds all the GOP talk about “honor” reminiscent of both Nixon and the Star Trek villains.

In another uproarious edition of “The Word”, Colbert picks apart one of the most interesting moments from Fox News’ recent Republican presidential debate, where Mike Huckabee attacked Ron Paul from the right for his anti-war stance. Huckabee talked about leaving Iraq with honor, using almost identical language compared to Richard Nixon when he was trying to pull out of Vietnam. By the time John McCain chimes in the Republicans are starting sound more like Klingons than real people.

Vodpod videos no longer available. from posted with vodpod




h/t: CURRENT EVENTS BLOG: Society, Media, & Justice

FAIR USE NOTICE: This blog may contain copyrighted material. Such material is made available for educational purposes, to advance understanding of human rights, democracy, scientific, moral, ethical, and social justice issues, etc. This constitutes a ‘fair use’ of any such copyrighted material as provided for in Title 17 U.S.C. section 107 of the US Copyright Law. This material is distributed without profit.

Couture in the Time of Cholera by Glitzqueen (aka The Other Katherine Harris)


Featured writer
Dandelion Salad

Glitzqueen’s blog post

Sept. 14, 2007

As the 1930s and portions of the ’70s and ’80s made plain, Midis Mean Misery (mass misery, not merely for those with fat calves). And they’re back.

Remarking on the New York Fashion Week just ended, “luxury consultant” (can you imagine printing that on your business card or introducing yourself as one with a straight face?) Robert Burke opined, “There’s uncertainty … The stock market’s been all over the place and elections are coming up. People want to look more serious … ” He added “as opposed to frivolous” in an odd impulse to clarify the blatant.

Burke’s deep musings were cited yesterday by the London Independent, which should be able to tell us if designers’ skirt lengths at home predict an equally bleak spring, once London Fashion Week kicks off tomorrow.

Meanwhile, a cholera epidemic is advancing toward Baghdad. Things like this tend to spoil the party even faster than the bursting of a credit bubble.

Describing an 1832 Paris outbreak, German poet Heinrich Heine wrote: “A masked ball in progress … suddenly the gayest of the harlequins collapsed, cold in the limbs, and underneath his mask, violet blue in the face. Laughter died out, dancing ceased and in a short while carriage-loads of people hurried from the Hotel Dieu to die … Soon the public halls were filled with dead bodies, sewed in sacks for want of coffins … long lines of hearses stood in queue …”

In provinces north of Iraq’s capital, some 7,000 were already afflicted, as of The New York Times report a few days ago, and 10 were known dead. Counts are tenuous, as is typical there, but perhaps numbers are shakier in this instance. The contagion strikes so suddenly and dehydrates the body so quickly that you can feel fine in the morning and expire by nightfall. Families worried about an absent member can’t so much as file a “missing person” report that soon.

Obviously, rapid diagnosis and treatment are essential to survival. Just as obviously, the prevailing turmoil mitigates against both –- while also helping to produce the unsanitary living conditions in which cholera spreads like kudzu. Besides the refugee crisis forcing so many into makeshift quarters, the chemical needed to purify their water of the bacterium is in scant supply, its importation restricted due to fear of chlorine bombs. Given the lack, even water purification plants may now be infected, according to Kirkuk General Hospital official Dr. Burhan Omar.

The Iraqis know a thing or two about cholera — it’s endemic, cropping up periodically — and their experts foresee cases in Baghdad by the end of this month or in early October, when temperatures will be particularly favorable for growth of the bug.

That life could become even more macabre in that long-tortured city is almost beyond imagination, but certainly not beyond plausibility. In addition to launching a damned serious (as opposed to frivolous) program of water testing and chlorination, our buffoonish representatives in Iraq had better begin thinking hard about an exit schedule that doesn’t drag out for years.

Here’s a hint for them: Almost 18,000 passengers fly in and out of Albuquerque daily. So just the number of planes serving this one middling-sized city could move 180,000 soldiers in 10 days. Picture how fast the task could be done with the quantity winging from New York, Paris and Milan to London for the moveable feast of Fashion Week.

Don’t Enlist! Former National Guard Poster Boy Speaks Out (video)

Dandelion Salad


links to the recruiting video, click above


Preventing a Rogue President from Committing a War Crime: Open Letter to the New Generation of Military Officers by Lt. Col. Robert M. Bowman

Resistance in the Ranks

Preventing a Rogue President from Committing a War Crime: Open Letter to the New Generation of Military Officers by Lt. Col. Robert M. Bowman

Dandelion Salad

by Lt. Col. Robert M. Bowman
Global Research, September 13, 2007

Should some civilian order you to initiate a nuclear attack on Iran, you are duty-bound to refuse that order

“I contend that should some civilian order you to initiate a nuclear attack on Iran (for example), you are duty-bound to refuse that order. I might also suggest that you should consider whether the circumstances demand that you arrest whoever gave the order as a war criminal.” (Dr., Lt. Col. Bob Bowman)

Duty, Honor, Country 2007

An Open Letter to the New Generation of Military Officers Serving and Protecting Our Nation

By Dr. Robert M. Bowman, Lt. Col., USAF, ret., National Commander, The Patriots

Dear Comrades in Arms,

You are facing challenges in 2007 that we of previous generations never dreamed of. I’m just an old fighter pilot (101 combat missions in Vietnam, F-4 Phantom, Phu Cat, 1969-1970) who’s now a disabled veteran with terminal cancer from Agent Orange. Our mailing list (over 22,000) includes veterans from all branches of the service, all political parties, and all parts of the political spectrum. We are Republicans and Democrats, Greens and Libertarians, Constitutionists and Reformers, and a good many Independents. What unites us is our desire for a government that (1) follows the Constitution, (2) honors the truth, and (3) serves the people.

We see our government going down the wrong path, all too often ignoring military advice, and heading us toward great danger. And we look to you who still serve as the best hope for protecting our nation from disaster.

We see the current Iraq War as having been unnecessary, entered into under false pretenses, and horribly mismanaged by the civilian authorities. Thousands of our brave troops have been needlessly sacrificed in a futile attempt at occupation of a hostile land. Many more thousands have suffered wounds which will change their lives forever. Tens of thousands have severe psychological problems because of what they have seen and what they have done. Potentially hundreds of thousands could be poisoned by depleted uranium, with symptoms appearing years later, just as happened to us exposed to Agent Orange. The military services are depleted and demoralized. The VA system is under-funded and overwhelmed. The National Guard and Reserves have been subjected to tour after tour, disrupting lives for even the lucky ones who return intact. Jobs have been lost, marriages have been destroyed, homes have been foreclosed, and children have been estranged. And for what? We have lost allies, made new enemies, and created thousands of new terrorists, further endangering the American people.

But you know all this. I’m sure you also see the enormous danger in a possible attack on Iran, possibly with nuclear weapons. Such an event, seriously contemplated by the Cheney faction of the Bush administration, would make enemies of Russia and China and turn us into the number one rogue nation on earth. The effect on our long-term national security would be devastating.

Some of us had hoped that the new Democratic Congress would end the occupation of Iraq and take firm steps to prevent an attack on Iran, perhaps by impeaching Bush and Cheney. These hopes have been dashed. The lily-livered Democrats have caved in, turning their backs on those few (like Congressman Jack Murtha) who understand the situation. Many of us have personally walked the halls of Congress, to no avail.

This is where you come in.

We know that many of you share our concern and our determination to protect our republic from an arrogant, out-of-control, imperial presidency and a compliant, namby-pamby Congress (both of which are unduly influenced by the oil companies and other big-money interests). We know that you (like us) wouldn’t have pursued a military career unless you were idealistic and devoted to our nation and its people. (None of us do it for the pay and working conditions!) But we also recognize that you may not see how you can influence these events. We in the military have always had a historic subservience to civilian authority.

Perhaps I can help with whatever wisdom I’ve gathered from age (I retired in 1978, so I am ancient indeed).

Our oath of office is to “protect and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic.” Might I suggest that this includes a rogue president and vice-president? Certainly we are bound to carry out the legal orders of our superiors. But the Uniform Code of Military Justice (UCMJ) which binds all of us enshrines the Nuremberg Principles which this country established after World War II (which you are too young to remember). One of those Nuremberg Principles says that we in the military have not only the right, but also the DUTY to refuse an illegal order. It was on this basis that we executed Nazi officers who were “only carrying out their orders.”

The Constitution which we are sworn to uphold says that treaties entered into by the United States are the “highest law of the land,” equivalent to the Constitution itself. Accordingly, we in the military are sworn to uphold treaty law, including the United Nations charter and the Geneva Convention.

Based on the above, I contend that should some civilian order you to initiate a nuclear attack on Iran (for example), you are duty-bound to refuse that order. I might also suggest that you should consider whether the circumstances demand that you arrest whoever gave the order as a war criminal.

I know for a fact that in recent history (once under Nixon and once under Reagan), the military nuclear chain of command in the White House discussed these things and were prepared to refuse an order to “nuke Russia .” In effect they took the (non-existent) “button” out of the hands of the President.. We were thus never quite as close to World War III as many feared, no matter how irrational any president might have become. They determined that the proper response to any such order was, “Why, sir?” Unless there was (in their words) a “damn good answer,” nothing was going to happen.

I suggest that if you in this generation have not had such a discussion, perhaps it is time you do. In hindsight, it’s too bad such a discussion did not take place prior to the preemptive “shock and awe” attack on Baghdad . Many of us at the time spoke out vehemently that such an attack would be an impeachable offense, a war crime against the people of Iraq, and treason against the United States of America . But our voices were drowned out and never reached the ears of the generals in 2003. I now regret that I never sent a letter such as this at that time, but depended on the corporate media to carry my message. I must not make that mistake again.

Also in hindsight, President Bush could be court-martialed for abuse of power as Commander-in-Chief. Vice President Cheney could probably be court-martialed for his performance as Acting Commander-in-Chief in the White House bunker the morning of September 11, 2001 .

We in the U.S. military would never consider a military coup, removing an elected president and installing one of our own. But following our oath of office, obeying the Nuremberg Principles, and preventing a rogue president from committing a war crime is not a military coup. If it requires the detention of executive branch officials, we will not impose a military dictatorship. We will let the Constitutional succession take place. This is what we are sworn to. This is protecting the Constitution, our highest obligation. In 2007, this is what is meant by “Duty, Honor, Country.”

Thank you all for your service to this nation. May God bless America, and sustain us in this difficult time. And thanks for listening to the musings of an old junior officer.


Robert M. Bowman, PhD, Lt. Col., USAF, ret.

© Copyright Robert M. Bowman,, 2007
The url address of this article is:


Bush Administration War Plans directed against Iran by Michel Chossudovsky

British academics warn US is preparing “shock and awe” attack on Iran by Peter Symonds

The Anti-Empire Report: Read this or George W. Bush will be president the rest of your life by William Blum

When Wishful Thinking Replaces Resistance: Why Bush Can Get Away with Attacking Iran by Prof. Jean Bricmont

War Against Iran and the Logic of Dominance By Gareth Porter



Plant a Radish, Get a Radish? by Glitzqueen (aka The Other Katherine Harris)


Featured writer
Dandelion Salad

Glitzqueen’s blog post

Sept. 14, 2007

Plant a radish, get a radish, not a brussels-sprout.
That’s why I love vegetables: You know what you’re about!

Those lines from The Fantasticks played through my mind as I read this morning of a 20-year endangered species restoration program that yielded no gains, because mainly the wrong trout were planted: not greenback cutthroats but their lookalikes: just cutthroats (cleverly trading in Euros, perhaps). In other words:

Plant a cutthroat, get a fish. Its ilk remains in doubt.
Advanced genetic testing is required to sort trout out.

Other news soon thumped that silliness out of my system, but it’s hard to shake the “cutthroat” imagery, given all the shameless cruelty around us. And “you plant it, you get it” stuck around as my theme of the day, pro and con.

This September Thursday — the dawn of a new year for some of us — asks us to examine not the wrongs of others, but our own. Through the span between Rosh ha-Shanah and Yom Kippur, the Old Mythology tells us we may yet repent, atone and thus avert the worst of what was otherwise divinely decreed for us in the year to come. “On Rosh ha-Shanah, it is written; on Yom Kippur, it is sealed,” as the liturgy goes, so traditionally this was an urgent sirens-blaring time during which one hastened to reconcile personal differences, make good on promises and apologize for doing any harm. It was also a period for gathering to recite so-called Selichot prayers in which all confess to all crimes, broadly characterized as failures of truth, failures of justice and failures of love.

Modern reason of course cries out against the admission that, if anybody did it, we did it, too. We like to speak of choices, not fates — other than those we bring upon ourselves, a la karmic payback. And yet I blogged at this season last year:

When we speak with one voice, acknowledging that everything wrong is our shared job to set right, something wonderfully humbling happens. How can the hypocrite not repent falsehood, hearing the honorable do so? How can the brutal not repent violence, hearing the gentle do so? How can the prejudiced not repent baseless hatred, hearing the loving do so? How can the powerful not repent arrogance and greed, hearing the exploited poor do so?

They’re pretty thoughts, but I can’t get behind them now, because the hypocrites, the brutal, the prejudiced and the powerful are so profoundly undeterred. Not only reason but spent blood and wrenching despair cry out today against those truly responsible for the world’s agony. What they planted for their profit, everybody else is reaping in tears: the beleaguered Iraqis, our mostly kid soldiers and hard-working people around the world betrayed by their own leaders and a host of policies expressly designed to rob them and enrich plutocrats.

While I have fallen short in many ways that pain me, I can’t embrace those who deliberately engendered such immeasurable evil when I say:

Ve’al kulam Elohai Selichot, selach lanu, mechal lanu, kaper lanu.
For all these, Lord of Forgiveness, forgive us, pardon us, grant us atonement.

I don’t believe in hell, except as a very common human experience — but, if I did, Shrub and His Thugs should rot in it. I’m not buying Mea Culpas that are undeserved, like this piece of crap. If those of conscience and good will had any control over what’s being done, that would be different, but it couldn’t possibly be any clearer that we don’t.


Is the U.S. planning an attack on Iran? Paul Jay talks with Aijaz Ahmad (videos)

Dandelion Salad


Aijaz Ahmad analyzes America’s threat… Aijaz Ahmad analyzes America’s threats toward Iran


“This administration is determined to attack Iran before it leaves office.”

This is the first segment of a two part interview, Senior Editor Paul Jay talks with Aijaz Ahmad.

Based in New Delhi, Aijaz Ahmed is a Senior Editorial Consultant and political commentator for the Indian newsmagazine, Frontline. He has taught Political Science and written widely on South Asia and the Middle East.

“They must commit themselves to not producing the weapon, which they have. They must commit themselves to inspections, which they have. They have a sovereign right to create, to pursue enrichment for peaceful purposes.”

This is the second half of an interview with Aijaz Ahmad.

Based in New Delhi, Aijaz Ahmed is a Senior Editorial Consultant and political commentator for the Indian newsmagazine, Frontline. He has taught Political Science and written widely on South Asia and the Middle East.

Olbermann and Biden Respond to John “Small Price” Boehner + Worst Person (videos)

Dandelion Salad


Keith Olbermann and Senator Joe Biden (D-DE) give their thoughts on the “small price” comments by Rep. John Boehner (R-OH), Sept. 13, 2007


And the winner is….Bill O’Reilly. R… And the winner is….Bill O’Reilly. Runners up the Pods company and Michael O’Hanlon.


Olbermann: The Real Reality + Leave Gen. Petraeus Alone!!! + Oliver North & Alan Colmes Get in to it + Frank Lutz: Breaking Down Bush’s Speech (videos)

Official Democratic Response Senator Jack Reid + Biden, Huckabee, Adam Smith (D-WA), John Edwards Responds (videos)

George Bush Speech Sept. 13, 2007 (videos)

Official Democratic Response Senator Jack Reid + Biden, Huckabee, Adam Smith (D-WA), John Edwards Responds (videos)

Dandelion Salad




George Bush Speech Sept. 13, 2007 (videos)

Olbermann: The Real Reality + Leave Gen. Petraeus Alone!!! + Oliver North & Alan Colmes Get in to it + Frank Lutz: Breaking Down Bush’s Speech (videos)

A Critique of the Critique of Bush’s Speech by Manila Ryce (The Largest Minority)