Dennis Kucinich and Eliot Engel: 2 congressman with very different views

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Al Jazeera’s Shihab Rattansi speaks to two congressman with very different views on the Gaza crisis.

Dennis Kucinich, Democratic member of the US House of Representatives and former presidential hopeful on why he feels Israel is violating international law with its invasion of Gaza. And secondly Eliot Engel, US congressman from New York, on why he supports the Israeli invasion of Gaza.

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Send a message to the new Congress asking for a ceasefire (action alert)

Dennis Kucinich: U.S. Weapons Used To Kill Children! Paid For By U.S. Taxpayers!

Israel May Be in Violation of Arms Export Control Act by Dennis Kucinich


Send a message to the new Congress asking for a ceasefire (action alert) (Updated)

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Updated: 1.9.09 see below

From an email from the Shalom Center (Rabbi Arthur Waskow)

Peace for Gaza, Israel, & the broader Middle East

Letters to Members of Congress calling urgently for US action to secure Gaza-Israel ceasefire and move quickly for regional peace. Please use FAX for strongest impact.

Dear  Member

Out of my very strong ethical, moral, and religious commitments and strong emotional connections with the peoples of the Middle East, I urge you to press for a US commitment to achieve an immediate cease-fire in the war between Gaza and Israel, enforced if necessary by a peacekeeping body.

I also urge you to voice support now for a broader peacemaking insistence by the US on a regional peace settlement among all the Arab states, Israel, a viable Palestinian state with a freely elected government of national unity, and Iran.

Thank you for turning away from casting blame for the past, toward instead securing peace for the future.

With blessings of great success for this session of Congress, and of shalom, salaam, peace —

Take action:


From an email from Just Foreign Policy:

Call Congress in Support of Gaza Ceasefire and Report the Result
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Jewish Peace News: Media and the war on Gaza

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Crossposted with permission from Jewish Peace News

Jewish Peace News
Jan 7, 2009


1) Media coverage: NY Times article

2) Media coverage: FAIR report

3) Amira Hass on the collapse of the infrastructure

4) The Times of London on Israel’s use of white phosphorus shells

As the death toll approaches 700, the Israeli military continues to defy an Israeli Supreme Court ruling that foreign correspondents must be allowed into Gaza. As the New York Times reports (first piece below), foreign journalists are barred from seeing the scenes of carnage inside Gaza, while being given full access to Israeli government propaganda as well as guided tours of sites where Palestinian missiles have fallen.

The success of the Israeli government’s concerted efforts to monopolize the narrative are apparent – the media watchdog group, FAIR, has issued a report criticizing coverage of the fighting (second piece below) and in particular the tendency of the press to blame the conflict on missile attacks by Hamas, often even while citing facts that put into question this deceptive chronology.

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Mosaic News – 1/6/09: War on Gaza – Day 11

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This video may contain images depicting the reality and horror of war/violence and should only be viewed by a mature audience.


Mosaic needs your help! Donate here:

“Israeli Strike on School in Gaza Kills 40,” Al Arabiya TV, UAE

“Israel Uses Unconventional Weapons in Gaza,” Press TV, Iran

“Bush Holds Hamas Responsible,” IBA TV, Israel

“An Entire Family Persishes in Gaza,” Al-Alam TV, Iran

“Queen of Jordan: Save the Children in Gaza,” Jordan TV, Jordan

“Doctors Try to Enter Gaza to Treat the Injured,” Nile TV, Egypt

“World Masses Protest Gaza Massacre,” New TV, Lebanon

Produced for Link TV by Jamal Dajani.

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Gaza MP3 Telephone interview with Uri Avnery Evening Jan 07 2008

Bennis: Calling a TV station pro-Hamas does not make it a military target

Dennis Kucinich: U.S. Weapons Used To Kill Children! Paid For By U.S. Taxpayers!


Murder in cold blood by Todd Chretien + Bart Police Shoot Oscar Grant

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Updated: replaced video

Todd Chretien reports on the outpouring of anger after Oakland police killed an unarmed man on the platform of a transit station.
January 7, 2009

ON NEW Year’s Eve, as scores of horrified people looked on, Oakland transit police forced 22-year-old Oscar Grant to the ground, kneeled on his head and then shot him in the back.

Grant, an African American father of a 4-year-old daughter and an Oakland grocery story worker, died several hours later. The bullet entered his back, ricocheted off the concrete floor and punctured his lungs.

Police attempted to confiscate cell phone videos taken by Bay Area Rapid Transit passengers and initially claimed that security cameras didn’t record the incident. However, in the last two days, they have been forced to admit that the security cameras did capture the assault.

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Bennis: Calling a TV station pro-Hamas does not make it a military target

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Bennis: Calling a TV station pro-Hamas does not make it a military target Pt.2/2

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Photographers criminalised as police ‘abuse’ anti-terror laws

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By Jonathan Brown
The Independent
Tuesday, 6 January 2009

Fury as stop-and-search powers are used to block and confiscate legal pictures

Reuben Powell is an unlikely terrorist. A white, middle-aged, middle-class artist, he has been photographing and drawing life around the capital’s Elephant & Castle for 25 years.

With a studio near the 1960s shopping centre at the heart of this area in south London, he is a familiar figure and is regularly seen snapping and sketching the people and buildings around his home – currently the site of Europe’s largest regeneration project. But to the police officers who arrested him last week his photographing of the old HMSO print works close to the local police station posed an unacceptable security risk.

“The car skidded to a halt like something out of Starsky & Hutch and this officer jumped out very dramatically and said ‘what are you doing?’ I told him I was photographing the building and he said he was going to search me under the Anti-Terrorism Act,” he recalled.


via Photographers criminalised as police ‘abuse’ anti-terror laws – Home News, UK – The Independent

Dennis Kucinich: U.S. Weapons Used To Kill Children! Paid For By U.S. Taxpayers!

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January 07, 2009 C-SPAN

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Israel May Be in Violation of Arms Export Control Act by Dennis Kucinich

Kucinich Calls For Independent United Nations Inquiry On Gaza


Israel’s Historical Mistake by Shourideh Cherie Molavi

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Crossposted with permission from

by Shourideh Cherie Molavi
Socialist Project | The Bullet
January 6, 2009

No matter how the current war plays out, it is certain that Israel has made a big historical mistake in entering Gaza.

On Saturday night, one week after the start of Operation Cast Lead in the Gaza Strip, the Israeli ground operation began. Israeli Forces began deploying combat units to surround Hamas’ main power base, the declared goal of which is “not to chase after and destroy every last rocket launcher, but rather to break the Hamas’ resistance.” Israel believes that the ground incursion into Gaza will significantly damage Hamas’ standing army and give its leadership a clear sense of the threat to their rule.

Israeli Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni was clear from the beginning. “The state of Israel, and a government under me, will make it a strategic objective to topple the Hamas regime in Gaza,” she said at a meeting of her Kadima party almost a week before the war began. Indeed, the call to remove Hamas is reiterated by most of Israel’s prominent political figures.

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Israel’s aim: To make the Gazan prison even more secure by Jonathan Cook

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by Jonathan Cook
Global Research, January 7, 2009

There are two persistent myths about the aim of Israel’s onslaught on Gaza: the first that it is an entirely defensive move, a way to end the rocket fire of Hamas; and the second that it is designed to restore the army’s credibility after its failure to cow Hizbollah in 2006.

No doubt the Israeli army has been itching to repair its battered image, and for sure the rocket attacks from Gaza create domestic pressures that are only too clear to an Israeli government about to face an election.

But it is a gross misunderstanding of what is unfolding in Gaza to believe Israel’s motives are capricious. The politicians and generals have been preparing for this attack for many months, possibly years — a fact alone that suggests they have bigger objectives than commonly assumed.

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From the mainstream war media: Turkey holds suspicious Iran-Venezuela shipment

compiled by Cem Ertür
featured writer
Dandelion Salad
7 January, 2009

Editorial note:

Turkish daily Milliyet broke the story below on December 30 with the “Iranian explosives in Mersin!” title. Mersin is a port city in southern Turkey, close to the US Airbase in Incirlik.

Meanwhile, according to another Turkish daily Hürriyet, Mr Ali Riza Ozturk, a parliamentarian from the opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP), issued a parliamentary question addressed to Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan concerning the allegations that the NATO base in Naples, Italy would be moved to Urla (western Turkey). As the [US] Incirlik Air Base (southern Turkey) is “within the firing range of Iran and Syria”, Urla would henceforth become the main [US/NATO] airbase in the country in its stead, with the approval of the Turkish government. Actually, this news report is at least two years old. It is also worth noting that the US Incirlik Air Base contains 90 nuclear warheads.

Turkey holds suspicious Iran-Venezuela shipment

Turkish customs discovers lab equipment capable of producing explosives in shipment of 22 containers labeled ‘tractor parts’ traveling from Iran to Venezuela

by Selcan Hacaoglu, Guardian, 6 January 2009

Turkey was holding a suspicious shipment bound for Venezuela from Iran because it contained lab equipment capable of producing explosives, a customs official said Tuesday.


Authorities detected the equipment during a search of 22 containers labeled “tractor parts,” Tosun said. They were brought to Mersin by trucks from neighboring Iran, he said. Turkey’s Interior Ministry said an investigation was under way.

“Experts from Turkey’s Atomic Institute determined there were no traces of radioactive material, but said the equipment was enough to set up an explosives lab,” Tosun said. “We have asked the military to send experts to determine whether to resume the shipment.”


An Iranian embassy official, speaking on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to speak to the media, said the shipment contained “nothing important.”


Consumers Can Rescue the Economy by Joel S. Hirschhorn

by Joel S. Hirschhorn
featured writer
Dandelion Salad
January 7, 2009

When I was young talk about millions of dollars impressed me. When I was older talk about billions of dollars dismayed me. Now, regular talk about trillions of dollars, especially government spending, nauseates me. People never seem to learn that they control the fate of the American economy.

It is far too easy to blame in bad times or thank in good times Wall Street, the government, or super-rich and powerful financial entities. In actual fact it is always the spending of money by the general population on consumer products and services, housing, cars, or investments that drives the economy. The core problem is that the public does not act in concert to serve its own interests but, instead, takes its cues from the external world and puts its trust in the wrong people and entities.

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The Secret and (Very) Profitable World of Intelligence and Narcotrafficking

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by Tom Burghardt
Antifascist Calling…
Jan 1, 2009

When Afghan drug kingpin Haji Bashir Noorzai was arrested in New York in 2005, it set off a chain of events that continue to echo today.

A federal jury in Manhattan convicted Noorzai September 22, for his involvement in an international narcotics trafficking conspiracy that sold tens of millions of dollars of heroin on world markets. The drug lord now faces life in prison and will be sentenced on January 7.

But things aren’t always what they seem.

Noorzai, described by federal investigators and journalists as “the richest man in Afghanistan,” enjoyed close and cosy relations with the Taliban’s top leader Mullah Omar, al-Qaeda and Pakistan’s Inter Service Intelligence agency (ISI).

Indeed, Noorzai had become one of the capo tutti capos of Afghanistan’s flourishing heroin rackets and profited handsomely from the protection of his Taliban “friends,” his ISI mentors and allegedly the CIA.

The Washington Post reported December 27, that Noorzai’s New York arrest was aided by a private security outfit, Rosetta Research and Consulting, a firm founded in 2003 by two “businessmen” which the Post refuses to name “because of the sensitive nature of their undercover work.”


via Antifascist Calling…: The Secret and (Very) Profitable World of Intelligence and Narcotrafficking.

Duck Soup

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March 10, 2007

After a considerable delay, here’s part 1 of “Duck Soup”, the fifth Marx Brothers film and the last they made for Paramount (and incidentally the last Marx film with Zeppo). It bombed in 1933, but is now (rightfully, IMO) considered to be one of the funniest movies of all time.

BTW, “Duck Soup” also marks (no pun intended) the first time Margaret Dumont worked with the Marxes on a script written directly for the screen- her two previous films with them had been based on stage plays.

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Parts 2-9