Iran’s President Did Not Say “Israel must be wiped off the map” By Arash Norouzi (2007)

Dandelion Salad

Posted previously on my old blog.  ~DS

By Arash Norouzi
01/18/07 “Information Clearing House

Across the world, a dangerous rumor has spread that could have catastrophic implications. According to legend, Iran’s President has threatened to destroy Israel, or, to quote the misquote, “Israel must be wiped off the map”. Contrary to popular belief, this statement was never made, as this article will prove.

BACKGROUND:

On Tuesday, October 25th, 2005 at the Ministry of Interior conference hall in Tehran, newly elected Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad delivered a speech at a program, reportedly attended by thousands, titled “The World Without Zionism”. Large posters surrounding him displayed this title prominently in English, obviously for the benefit of the international press. Below the poster’s title was a slick graphic depicting an hour glass containing planet Earth at its top. Two small round orbs representing the United States and Israel are shown falling through the hour glass’ narrow neck and crashing to the bottom.

Before we get to the infamous remark, it’s important to note that the “quote” in question was itself a quote— they are the words of the late Ayatollah Khomeini, the father of the Islamic Revolution. Although he quoted Khomeini to affirm his own position on Zionism, the actual words belong to Khomeini and not Ahmadinejad. Thus, Ahmadinejad has essentially been credited (or blamed) for a quote that is not only unoriginal, but represents a viewpoint already in place well before he ever took office.

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Margaret Wertheim: The beautiful math that links coral, crochet and hyperbolic geometry

Dandelion Salad

TEDtalksDirector

TedTalks
http://www.ted.com
Filmed Feb 2009 Posted April 2009

Margaret Wertheim leads a project to re-create the creatures of the coral reefs using a crochet technique invented by a mathematician — celebrating the amazements of the reef, and deep-diving into the hyperbolic geometry underlying coral creation.

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Sources: Wiretap Recorded Rep. Harman Promising to Intervene for AIPAC By Jeff Stein

Dandelion Salad

By Jeff Stein, CQ SpyTalk Columnist
http://www.cqpolitics.com
April 20, 2009

Rep. Jane Harman , the California Democrat with a longtime involvement in intelligence issues, was overheard on an NSA wiretap telling a suspected Israeli agent that she would lobby the Justice Department to reduce espionage-related charges against two officials of the American Israeli Public Affairs Committee, the most powerful pro-Israel organization in Washington.

Harman was recorded saying she would “waddle into” the AIPAC case “if you think it’ll make a difference,” according to two former senior national security officials familiar with the NSA transcript.

[…]

In exchange for Harman’s help, the sources said, the suspected Israeli agent pledged to help lobby Nancy Pelosi , D-Calif., then-House minority leader, to appoint Harman chair of the Intelligence Committee after the 2006 elections, which the Democrats were heavily favored to win.

via CQ Politics | Sources: Wiretap Recorded Rep. Harman Promising to Intervene for AIPAC.

h/t: ICH

see also:

Major scandal erupts involving Rep. Jane Harman, Alberto Gonzales and AIPAC – Glenn Greenwald – Salon.com h/t: ICH

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see

NSA Spies On Americans Outside The Law

Domestic Spying

from the archives

Pres-Elect Obama, No To Anti-Freedom War-Hawk Jane Harman!! + ‘Thought crime bill’ writer on short list

Declassified letter exposes Democratic Party complicity in CIA torture By Joe Kay

Ten Terrible Truths About The CIA Torture Memos, Part 1 by Andy Worthington

Updated: 21 April 2009 added points 3-5

by Andy Worthington
Featured Writer
Dandelion Salad
www.andyworthington.co.uk
Originally posted at the Future of Freedom Foundation
20 April 2009

Andy Worthington, author of The Guantánamo Files, analyzes ten particularly disturbing facts to emerge from the four memos, purporting to justify the use of torture by the CIA, which were issued by the Justice Department’s Office of Legal Counsel (OLC) in August 2002 and May 2005, and released by the Obama administration last week.

The OLC, as the New York Times explained in September 2007, holds a uniquely influential position, as it “interprets all laws that bear on the powers of the executive branch. The opinions of the head of the office are binding, except on the rare occasions when they are reversed by the attorney general or the president.” The legal opinions were, therefore, regarded as a “golden shield” by the administration, although, as lawyer Peter Weiss noted after I last wrote about the Bush administration’s war crimes, “it cannot be binding if it violates the constitution, or a jus cogens prohibition of international law, e.g. torture, or, perhaps, if it was made to order for the executive, as you demonstrate it was.”

1) The “torture memos” (August 2002)

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Where’s Rev. Wright When You Need Him? by Chris Hedges

by Chris Hedges
Featured Writer
Dandelion Salad
Truthdig
April 20, 2009

Israel and the United States, which could be charged under international law with crimes against humanity for actions in Gaza, Iraq and Afghanistan, will together boycott the United Nations World Conference Against Racism in Geneva. Racism, an endemic feature of Israeli and American society, is not, we have decided, open for international inspection. Barack Obama may be president, but the United States has no intention of accepting responsibility or atoning for past crimes, including the use of torture, its illegal wars of aggression, slavery and the genocide on which the country was founded. We, like Israel, prefer to confuse lies we tell about ourselves with fact.

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Obama boycotts anti-racism conference + More Countries Join Boycott

Dandelion Salad

TheRealNews

President Obama defends decision to boycott UN anti-racism conference

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Spanish judge keeps Guantanamo probe alive + Waterboarded 183 Times + More revelations from Bush torture memos

Dandelion Salad

Reuters
Fri Apr 17, 2009 9:30pm EDT

MADRID (Reuters) – A Spanish judge considering possible criminal action against six former Bush administration officials for torture at the U.S. prison at Guantanamo Bay defied pressure to drop the case Friday.

[…]

via Spanish judge keeps Guantanamo probe alive | International | Reuters

h/t: CLG

***

Torture memos reveal brutality of US imperialism

By Tom Eley
http://www.wsws.org
18 April 2009

On Thursday, the US Justice Department released four legal memos crafted during the Bush administration that authorized agents of the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) to commit specific acts of torture against prisoners swept up in the “war on terror.” The Obama administration faced a Thursday deadline to release the memos after a Freedom of Information Act lawsuit by the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU).

The release of the legal opinions, written by lawyers in the Justice Department’s Office of Legal Counsel in 2002 and 2005, adds to an overwhelming body of evidence that proves the Bush administration carried out a large-scale and systematic torture operation in flagrant violation of domestic and international law. The public record already included accounts from victims, a recently leaked International Committee of the Red Cross report documenting various instance of torture, and numerous media accounts that include quotes from interrogators and Bush administration officials endorsing torture.

[…]

via Torture memos reveal brutality of US imperialism.

***

Khalid Sheikh Mohammed Was Waterboarded 183 Times in One Month

By: emptywheel Saturday April 18, 2009 11:57 am

I’ve put this detail in a series of posts, but it really deserves a full post. According to the May 30, 2005 Bradbury memo, Khalid Sheikh Mohammed was waterboarded 183 times in March 2003 and Abu Zubaydah was waterboarded 83 times in August 2002.

On page 37 of the OLC memo, in a passage discussing the differences between SERE techniques and the torture used with detainees, the memo explains:

The CIA used the waterboard “at least 83 times during August 2002” in the interrogation of Zubaydah. IG Report at 90, and 183 times during March 2003 in the interrogation of KSM, see id. at 91.

Note, the information comes from the CIA IG report which, in the case of Abu Zubaydah, is based on having viewed the torture tapes as well as other materials. So this is presumably a number that was once backed up by video evidence.

[…]

via Emptywheel » Khalid Sheikh Mohammed Was Waterboarded 183 Times in One Month.

h/t: CLG

***

From insects to waterboarding: 10 ‘torture’ techniques blessed by Bush

Times Online
April 17, 2009

In this August 1, 2002 memo, Jay S Bybee of the US Department of Justice approves ten methods of “enhanced interrogation” on the suspected terrorist Abu Zubaydah. He was writing to John Rizzo, CIA acting general counsel

These ten techniques are: (l) attention grasp, (2) walling, (3) facial hold, (4) facial slap (insult slap), (5) cramped confinement, (6) wall standing, (7) stress positions, (8) sleep deprivation, (9) insects placed in a confinement box, and (10) the waterboard.

You have informed us that the use of these techniques would be on an as-needed basis and that not all of these techniques will necessarily be used.

[…]

via From insects to waterboarding: 10 ‘torture’ techniques blessed by Bush – Times Online.

h/t: CLG

***

More revelations from Bush torture memos

By Tom Eley
http://www.wsws.org
20 April 2009

The Bush administration memos released last Thursday by the US Justice Department demonstrate that Washington carried out a studied and systematic torture operation for years.

The documents, written by lawyers in the Office of Legal Counsel (OLC) to a Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) counsel, make clear that the CIA was carrying out torture prior to, and during the time the memos were written in 2002 and 2005.

They also show that Bush administration officials were well aware that the methods discussed could be construed as torture. They therefore sought to develop an ex post facto and pseudo-legal rationale for specific acts of torture, in defiance of US and international laws.

via More revelations from Bush torture memos.

***

White House bars prosecution of Bush officials who authorized torture

By Patrick Martin
http://www.wsws.org
20 April 2009

In the wake of last week’s release of the top-secret Bush administration documents setting out a pseudo-legal justification for torture, the Obama administration is caught in a devastating political contradiction.

The documents, legal memos drafted by the US Department of Justice in 2002 and 2005, clearly establish that acts of torture which are criminal under both US and international law were authorized and justified by the highest levels of the Bush administration. But while making the documents public, Obama has asserted that both those responsible for devising the torture policy and those who carried it out will not be prosecuted.

via White House bars prosecution of Bush officials who authorized torture.

see

Fault Lines: Richard Armitage on torture

Torture on Dandelion Salad

Gitmo

Rendition

Americas Summit: ALBA Nations Condemn Capitalism

Dandelion Salad

Socialist Voice
April 18, 2009

Introduction. The following statement was issued on April 17 by six of the seven governments of the ALBA economic and social alliance in Latin America. (The seventh member, Ecuador, was unable to attend the meeting.) Speaking in Australia, Luis Bilbao, editor of the monthly magazine América XXI (published in Venezuela, Argentina and Uruguay), described the statement as “profound” and “historic.”

“We have seven governments of the world speaking in language that used to be the reserve of left parties only,” Bilbao said. “Gone is diplomatic language to discuss the political and economic situation facing Latin America and the Caribbean and their relation with the United States. Instead, we read that the draft statement of the Summit of the Americas is considered ‘inadequate and unacceptable.’ The ALBA countries declare that an entirely different approach to the world’s problems is required.

“In opposition to the Summit statement is a radical and far-reaching declaration of anti-capitalism and socialism. This is something which the world’s left wing parties must make known to the peoples of the world.”

Document of the Bolivarian Alternative for the Peoples of Our Americas (ALBA) countries for the 5th Summit of the Americas

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Fault Lines: Richard Armitage on torture

Dandelion Salad

AlJazeeraEnglish

Richard Armitage, a former US deputy secretary of state, talks to Al Jazeera’s Avi Lewis about the Bush administration’s use of torture. He tells Fault Lines that had he known the CIA waterboarded detainees, he hopes he would have resigned.

Vodpod videos no longer available.

more about “Richard Armitage on torture“, posted with vodpod

see

Olbermann Special Comment: We cannot let mistakes of the past haunt our future + Torture Memos

Bush Administration authorized use of insects in interrogations + Justice Dept Releases Bush Admin Torture Memos

Former Bush Officials Can No Longer Travel To Europe + Spain Will NOT Pursue Torture Prosecution

Torture on Dandelion Salad

NSA Spies On Americans Outside The Law

Dandelion Salad

American Civil Liberties Union
(4/16/2009)

Agency Skirts Broad Powers Authorized By Congress

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
CONTACT: (202) 675-2312 or media@dcaclu.org
(212) 549-2666 or media@aclu.org

WASHINGTON – The National Security Agency (NSA) has been intercepting Americans’ emails and phone calls in recent months to an extent that exceeded even the overbroad limits permitted under the controversial spying legislation passed last summer. According to the New York Times, the NSA’s “overcollection” of American’ communications has been “significant and systemic.”

The FISA Amendments Act of 2008 (FAA) was passed last July despite opposition from the American Civil Liberties Union and other privacy advocates. It effectively legalized the secret warrantless surveillance program President Bush approved in late 2001, but it also gave the government new spying powers, including the power to conduct dragnet surveillance of Americans’ international communications. The ACLU filed a federal lawsuit immediately after Congress passed the law challenging its constitutionality. The lawsuit is still pending.

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