Senators say report of planned US strikes on Iran untrue

Dandelion Salad

by Nick Juliano
Global Research, May 29, 2008
Raw Story

An anonymously sourced report that emerged Wednesday claims President Bush plans to launch an attack against Iran before summer’s end, but aides to two Senators who were supposedly told of the plan tell RAW STORY that the report is absolutely untrue.

Asia Times correspondent Muhammad Cohen, reporting from New York, writes that an “informed source” has clued him in to plans from the Bush administration “to launch an air strike against Iran within the next two months.”

Cohen’s source told him that Sens. Diane Feinstein (D-CA), who is on the Senate Intelligence Committee, and Richard Lugar (R-IN), the ranking member of the Foreign Relations Committee, were secretly briefed on the administration’s plans and were prepared to write a New York Times op-ed condemning Bush. Aides to the two senators were quick to deny the report.

“That story was inaccurate. Senator Feinstein has not received any briefing – classified or unclassified – from the Administration involving any plans to strike Iran,” Philip J. Lavelle, the California Democrat’s press secretary, wrote in an e-mail to RAW STORY Wednesday. “In addition, she has not submitted an op-ed to the NYT, or any other paper, on this subject in recent days. She has been a strong advocate for diplomacy with Iran, and will continue to be one.”

Lugar spokesman Andy Fisher was more succinct: “No briefing. No oped. No conversations. No story.”

Speculation that the US might launch an attack on Iran has fluctuated over the last year or so, as the Bush administration and its allies on Capitol Hill have accused the regime of seeking to build a nuclear weapons arsenal and aiding insurgents in Iraq. Back in September, onetime Democrat Sen. Joe Lieberman asked US Gen. David Petraeus whether Iran should be invaded as part of an extension of the Iraq war.

Cohen said his source for the latest report was a “retired US career diplomat and former assistant secretary of state still active in the foreign affairs community” who was an ambassador under President Bush’s father, George H.W. Bush. Few precise details about the supposed strike were offered in the Asia Times report.

Lawmakers, including Sen. Joe Biden (D-DE), have said that an unauthorized strike on Iran would be grounds for impeachment.

The Bush administration has not said explicitly that an Iran attack is completely out of the question, but White House officials have emphasized that they prefer to work through diplomatic channels to counteract Iran’s nuclear ambitions.

The White House flatly denied a similar report last week that an Iran attack was imminent before he leaves office in January.

The CRG grants permission to cross-post original Global Research articles on community internet sites as long as the text & title are not modified. The source and the author’s copyright must be displayed. For publication of Global Research articles in print or other forms including commercial internet sites, contact: crgeditor@yahoo.com

www.globalresearch.ca contains copyrighted material the use of which has not always been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. We are making such material available to our readers under the provisions of “fair use” in an effort to advance a better understanding of political, economic and social issues. The material on this site is distributed without profit to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving it for research and educational purposes. If you wish to use copyrighted material for purposes other than “fair use” you must request permission from the copyright owner.

For media inquiries: crgeditor@yahoo.com
© Copyright Nick Juliano, Raw Story, 2008
The url address of this article is: www.globalresearch.ca/index.php?context=va&aid=9125

see

Bush “Plans Iran Air Strike by August”

Ron Paul Confronts The Liar – Condoleezza Rice (vid)

Spinning the IAEA report on Iran’s nuclear program (video)

Report: U.S. Will Attack Iran

Iran

US Court shuts down leaked doc emporium by Nick Juliano

Dandelion Salad

by Nick Juliano
Raw Story
Monday February 18, 2008

Wikileaks, the Web site that has revealed countless government secrets, has been forced offline by a California judge.
The site, which allows whistleblowers to post documents anonymously, is being sued by a Swiss banking group implicated in money laundering in documents obtained by Wikileaks. The BBC reports:

However, the main site was taken offline after the court ordered that Dynadot, which controls the site’s domain name, should remove all traces of wikileaks from its servers. The court also ordered that Dynadot should “prevent the domain name from resolving to the wikileaks.org website or any other website or server other than a blank park page, until further order of this Court.” Other orders included that the domain name be locked “to prevent transfer of the domain name to a different domain registrar” to prevent changes being made to the site.

Versions of Wikileaks from Great Britain and other countries are still accessible.

In taking Wikileaks offline, the US joins China and Thailand in censoring the watchdog site.

In its report on the injunction, Wikileaks compares the case to the New York Times being ordered not to publish the Pentagon Papers.

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In search for foreign intelligence, spies turn to YouTube, MySpace, blogs by Nick Juliano

Dandelion Salad

by Nick Juliano
Raw Story
Thursday February 7, 2008

With rapidly advancing technology spreading across the globe, US spies are shifting their focus from surreptitiously photographing secret Soviet documents to trolling the Internet for what could be the next key nugget of foreign intelligence.

Among the most valuable sources, one top spook says, are blogs, MySpace and other Web 2.0 hallmarks.

“We’re looking now at YouTube, which carries some unique and honest-to-goodness intelligence,” Doug Naquin, director of the CIA’s Open Source Center said in a recent speech to CIA retirees.

The speech was posted this week on SecrecyNews, the blog of the Federation of American Scientists Project on Government Secrecy.

“I would not have thought of YouTube as an obvious source of intelligence,” Steven Aftergood, the project’s director, told InfromationWeek, “but I think it’s a good sign that the Open Source Center is looking at it, and at other new media.”

Open source intelligence collection focuses on compiling and analyzing unclassified data from publicly available sources for use by the CIA, policy makers and other law enforcement agencies. Formerly known as the Foreign Broadcast Information Service, the Open Source Center’s mission in recent years has shifted from translating newspaper and television reports from abroad to culling the Web for information on foreign targets. The center trains intelligence agents and others in government.

“This training includes everything from media analysis to advanced Internet exploitation, way beyond Googling,” Naquin said.

The goal of open-source collection is to provide information that goes beyond what appears in the morning newspaper, and analysis of Web 2.0 content has become a key part of that, he said.

“A couple years back we identified Iranian blogs as a phenomenon worthy of more attention, about six months ahead of anybody else,” he said.

Now even Iranian president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has his own blog.

“We’re looking at chat rooms and things that didn’t even exist five years ago, and trying to stay ahead,” Naquin said. “We have groups looking at what they call ‘Citizens Media’: people taking pictures with their cell phones and posting them on the Internet. Then there’s Social Media, phenomena like MySpace and blogs.”

With the end of the Cold War, Naquin said open source collection became a low priority in the Intelligence Community, causing the FBIS staff to be cut in half during the 90s. The terror attacks aimed at New York and Washington changed all that.

“[Nine-Eleven] was sort of a watershed for us,” Naquin said. “The 9/11 Commission and WMD Commission both said, ‘You know what? There are a lot of open sources out there. We should be putting a lot more attention toward exploiting those sources.”

Naquin’s full speech is available here (.pdf).
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9/11 widows call for new investigation after revelations of White House, commission ties by Nick Juliano

Dandelion Salad

by Nick Juliano
Raw Story
February 5, 2008

The widows whose political activism was largely responsible for the establishment of a commission to investigate the September 11 attacks say a new book revealing the backstory of the 9/11 Commission proves that their initial concerns about its executive director were correct and demonstrate the need for another investigation.

Philip Shenon, who covered the proceedings for the New York Times, has written a new book, The Commission: The Uncensored History of the 9/11 Investigation, which was released Tuesday. The book reveals the close ties between commission executive director Philip Zelikow and White House advisers Karl Rove and Condoleezza Rice.

The Commission also reveals that aside from one staff member, no one on the 9/11 investigative panel reviewed what was perhaps the most robust treasure trove of pre-9/11 intelligence on al Qaeda — records from the National Security Agency, which conducts electronic surveillance and codebreaking for the US Intelligence Community.

“General Michael Hayden, who headed the NSA at the time, was eager to cooperate and share what his organization had with the 9/11 Commission, but Executive Director Zelikow was not interested,” 9/11 widows Patty Casazza, Monica Gabriellle, Mindy Kleinberg and Lorie Van Auken said in a statement reacting to the book.

“Why didnt Phil Zelikow make reviewing these vital NSA documents a Commission priority?” they ask. “It seems clear that not every fact and lead was followed in this investigation compromising the validity of the Commission’s final report and its findings.”

The 9/11 widows called for Zelikow to resign or be fired from the Commission back in 2004, when his ties with Rice and Rove were first revealed. Shenon’s book, they say, proves their concerns were right all along.

“It is abundantly clear that Philip Zelikow should have immediately been replaced when the first rumblings of his impropriety and conflicts of interest surfaced,” they said. “When all of this information became clear, the Commissioners and the press should have called for Zelikows resignation. We did. Shamefully, most were silent.”

As washingtonpost.com columnist Dan Froomkin notes, “This isn’t the first time it’s turned out that the 9/11 Commission wasn’t getting the full picture. It’s not even the second.”

Bob Woodward revealed in his book State of Denial, that 9/11 Commission members were not told of a July 10, 2001, meeting in which then-CIA Director George Tenet tried to warn Rice and Bush about the need to focus on al Qaeda and Osama bin Laden, while the president and his confidant were distracted by their pursuit of a missile defense system.

In another Bush administration exposé, investigative reporter Ron Suskind revealed the president’s brush-off of the ominous memo warning “Bin Laden Determined to Strike in U.S.”:

“All right,” Bush told the panicked CIA briefer who interrupted the president’s vacation to deliver the warning in person. “You’ve covered your ass, now.”

The 9/11 widows also fault the Commission for relying too much on information gained from “second and third hand knowledge of interrogations of tortured individuals, detainees that were being held in secret locations.”

They say Shenon’s book reveals information that “only scratches the surface” of what happened within the government before the 9/11 attacks.

“The bottom line is that the most deadly attack on American soil since Pearl Harbor remains dangerously unexamined,” they write. “This can only be remedied with an investigation guided by the facts and conducted outside the reach of those with a vested interest in suppressing the truth.”
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9/11 commission head met secretly with Rove, White House by Nick Juliano

Dandelion Salad

Nick Juliano
Raw Story
Thursday January 31, 2008

Former NSC aide denies political meddling

A book to be published next month contains an explosive allegation sure to call into question the independence of the 9/11 Commission: Its executive director secretly spoke with President Bush’s close adviser Karl Rove and others within the White House while the ostensibly autonomous commission was completing its report.

Philip Zelikow, a former colleague of then-National Security Adviser Condoleeza Rice, was appointed executive director of the 9/11 Commission despite his close ties to the Bush White House, and he remained in regular contact with Rove while overseeing the commission, according to New York Times reporter Philip Shenon’s new book, The Commission: The Uncensored History of the 9/11 Investigation. Shenon’s book will not be released until Feb. 5, but author Max Holland purchased an audio copy of it at a New York bookstore and published a summary on his blog, Washington DeCoded.

read more | digg story

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Democrats standing up to Bush on warrantless wiretap bill by Nick Juliano

Call or write your Senators today! Write To Congress

see: Stop Telecom Immunity Call Your Senators NOW! ~ Lo

Dandelion Salad

by Nick Juliano
Raw Story
January 28, 2008

In the shadow of the president’s final State of the Union address, Senate Democrats are preparing for an 11th-hour showdown with George W. Bush and his Republican allies in Congress over controversial surveillance legislation.The Senate will vote Monday at 4:30 p.m. on a GOP proposal that would cement an expansion of the president’s authority to spy on Americans and free from legal jeopardy any telephone or Internet service provider who helped the country’s intelligence agencies to collect vast amount of data on US citizens without a warrant. Anti-immunity activists say they expect the GOP gambit to fail.

Sen. Chris Dodd (D-CT) successfully led an effort to block immunity in December, just before Congress’ holiday recess, and the Senate returned to the issue last week, considering dual proposals from the Intelligence and Judiciary committees. Last Thursday, Republicans and a dozen Democrats blocked Judiciary’s proposal to update FISA without immunity, but the GOP then refused an agreement that would have required a mere 51-vote majority to pass further amendments.

…continued

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Dems in tough race as early results roll in by Nick Juliano

Dandelion Salad

by Nick Juliano
Raw Story
Published: Tuesday January 8, 2008

McCain wins GOP contest, Paul within striking distance of Giuliani

Very early results from Tuesday’s New Hampshire primary showed a closer-than-expected race developing between Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama.

With nearly half of precincts reporting, Clinton was showing a slight lead, with 39 percent of the vote to Obama’s 36 percent, but networks still avoided calling the race for either candidate. CNN reported that elections officials were waiting to receive results from some of New Hampshire’s college towns, which are expected to be bastions of Obama support.

Former North Carolina Senator John Edwards lagged far behind with 17 percent, according to news reports.

The GOP race was over almost as soon as it began. CNN called New Hampshire for John McCain at 8:13 p.m., less than a quarter-hour after polls closed. Early returns showed McCain up 37-28 over former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney.

Once polls officially closed at 8 p.m., CNN projected that Edwards would finished in third place, based on exit polls and early returns. The network said the fight between Hillary and Obama was too close to call, an unexpected development after pre-election surveys showed Obama with a healthy lead.

Further down the GOP ticket, Ron Paul was threatening to score a coup against onetime frontrunner Rudy Giuliani. Paul was nipping at the former New York Mayor’s heals with 8 percent of the vote in early returns compared to Giuliani’s 9 percent. At one point fewer than 100 votes separated the two men.

DEVELOPING…

***

Barack Obama and McCain ahead in polls

By Alex Spillius in Nashua, New Hampshire and Sally Peck
Telegraph
Last Updated: 2:09am GMT 09/01/2008

Barack Obama appears poised to cement his lead against rival Hillary Clinton in the race for the Democratic nomination as record numbers of New Hampshire residents turn out to vote in the state’s primary.

Mrs Clinton spent the day fighting to keep her once “inevitable” Democratic candidacy alive as early opinion polls indicated that Mr Obama was comfortably in the lead.

continued…

***

Clinton fights back in New Hampshire

· Clinton and Obama in predicted dead heat
· Republican primary called for McCain

Ewen MacAskill and Suzanne Goldenberg in Manchester, New Hampshire
Wednesday January 9, 2008
Guardian Unlimited
2.30am GMT / 9.30pm ET update

Hillary Clinton staged a remarkable comeback in New Hampshire tonight to slow Barack Obama’s progress towards the Democratic nomination.

With 40% of polling stations delivering results in New Hampshire, Clinton had captured 39% of the vote and Obama 37%.

A first-place finish or even a close second would mark an astonishing turnaround for Clinton, who had seemed almost overwhelmed by the wave of Obamamania that followed his win in the Iowa caucuses five days ago.

continued…

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DHS finalizing plans for domestic spy satellite program by Nick Juliano

Dandelion Salad

by Nick Juliano
Raw Story
Thursday December 20, 2007

Congress has not been updated since civil liberties concerns delayed satellite spying

A plan to dramatically widen US law enforcement agencies’ access to data from powerful spy satellites is moving toward implementation, as Department of Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff expects to finalize a charter for the program this week, according to a new report.

Chertoff insists the scheme to turn spy satellites — that were originally designed for foreign surveillance — on Americans is legal, although a House committee that would approve the program has not been updated on the program for three months.

“We still haven’t seen the legal framework we requested or the standard operation procedures on how the NAO will actually be run,” House Homeland Security Chairman Bennie G. Thompson tells the Wall Street Journal. Thompson was referring to the National Applications Office — a new DHS subset that would coordinate access to spy-satellite data for non-military domestic agencies, including law enforcement.

Civil liberties concerns delayed the program after lawmakers and outside activists wondered how the program would be structured to protect Americans from unconstitutional surveillance from the powerful satellites, which can see through cloud cover, trees and even concrete buildings.

The program’s charter remains unfinalized, but Chertoff said it will use clear language to explain legal restrictions on the data’s use. Warrants will be obtained when required before collecting satellite intelligence, and the program won’t use technology to intercept verbal communications, according to the Journal.

“One lesson I’ve learned is it’s not enough to say we know what we’re doing is going to be OK,” Chertoff told the paper in an interview. “We’ve got to really make it clear to the public that we’re doing this, but we’re not doing that.

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Backstory: An impeachment vote turnaround stuns Washington By Nick Juliano

Dandelion Salad

By Nick Juliano
After Downing Street
Raw Story

Nov. 7, 2007

Republican move was meant to embarass Democrats; Conyers’ Judiciary Committee seems tepid

Dennis Kucinich walked into his Capitol Hill office Tuesday evening clearly exhausted but full of hope. The Ohio Democrat had just returned from the House floor where crafty Republicans had joined with dozens of liberal lawmakers across the aisle to prevent Democratic leaders from scuttling Kucinich’s call to impeach Dick Cheney.

“The millions of Americans who have called on Congress to stand up for the Constitution are finally being heard,” Kucinich told reporters in his office after lawmakers had spent two hours on the House floor considering his impeachment move.

What was supposed to be a relatively simple — and largely symbolic — vote meant to allow a handful of lawmakers to formally level their displeasure with Vice President Dick Cheney turned into a full-blown fracas as Republicans used some last-minute maneuvers to help keep impeachment alive.

“I’m not going to deny there was some (political) gamesmanship,” Kucinich said of the Republicans who joined him to keep impeachment alive. Regardless of the GOP motives, though, Kucinich said Cheney deserved to be impeached for lying to Americans in the run-up to the Iraq war. The dark-horse Democratic candidate said the vice president’s ouster was the best chance America has to avoid another war with Iran.

Seven months after first introducing articles of impeachment of the vice president, Kucinich finally grew fed up with his party’s leaders who had steadfastly refused to even consider kicking the current administration out of the White House. Even before she had first rapped the Speaker’s gavel, Nancy Pelosi declared adamantly that impeachment was “off the table.”

Kucinich, the former mayor of Cleveland, found a way around his leaders’ objections, though. On Tuesday he introduced a privileged resolution on impeachment in the House. Because impeachment involves a question of Congress’s Constitutional role, Kucinich’s proposal was allowed to jump the legislative queue and receive an immediate floor vote.

The privileged resolution was hailed by pro-impeachment activists as a way to finally get lawmakers on the record about whether Cheney deserved to keep his job.

About 20 Code Pink activists gathered outside a Capitol Hill conference room where Kucinich was expected to speak to reporters. They were joined by a dozen Capitol Police officers, apparently wary of outbursts from the group that has made a name for itself disrupting events on the Hill, but Kucinich aides were unable to explain the heavy police presence.

As expected, the resolution was immediately met with a motion to table that would’ve effectively scuttled any further impeachment discussion. That move came from Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-MD), who like most rank-and-file Democrats opposes attempts to impeach Cheney or President Bush.

What happened next came as a surprise to virtually everyone. Instead of taking the opportunity to kill impeachment, Republicans saw an opportunity to embarrass Democrats and force them to spend several hours on a resolution that most believe has essentially no chance of passage.

As the 15-minute vote was nearing its close, Republicans began requesting — one at a time — the opportunity to change their votes. This not only prolonged consideration of impeachment, keeping the vote open for an hour longer than scheduled, it shifted enough support to scuttle the Democrats’ attempt to kill the bill.

“We don’t wish to save the Democrats from themselves when their left wing exposes themselves,” Rep. Jack Kingston (R-Ga.) told Roll Call, noting that Democratic leaders were trying to draw as little attention as possible to the impeachment issue by voting to table the resolution. “When there’s an opportunity to show their strong left base, it’s important for it to be seen,” he added.

The motion to table failed on a 251-162 vote with 165 Republicans voting against tabling the impeachment resolution. Democratic leaders — and even Kucinich’s staff — expected the tabling motion to pass easily giving the quirky Democrats bill a quiet death. Even the 86 Democrats who voted against their party’s efforts to kill the bill came as a surprise; Kucinich’s resolution had 22 co-sponsors and an aide to the Congressman told RAW STORY before the vote that few Democrats who weren’t co-sponsors were expected to vote to keep the bill alive.

Ultimately, the fate of Kucinich’s bill is unlikely to change. Democrats were nearly unified on a vote to send the impeachment articles to the Judiciary Committee, where it has languished since Kucinich began his effort to oust Cheney in April.

Kucinich and other progressive lawmakers implied that Judiciary Chairman John Conyers assured them he would move forward on impeachment, despite his previous reticence to do so.

“I’ve spoken to Mr. Conyers, and I’m quite confident that the bill is in good hands,” Kucinich told reporters at a press conference in his office after the vote.

A statement from the Judiciary Committee was less optimistic, saying the committee has a “very busy agenda,” including upcoming action on a foreign surveillance bill and attempts to hold current and former Bush aides in contempt of Congress.

“We were surprised that the minority was so ready to move forward with consideration of a matter of such complexity as impeaching the Vice President,” read a committee statement e-mailed to reporters an hour after the vote. “The Chairman will discuss today’s vote with the committee members but it would seem evident that the committee staff should continue to consider, as a preliminary matter, the many abuses of this Administration, including the Vice President.”

Conyers was perhaps Bush’s most vocal critic after the 2004 elections. In 2005, he introduced a motion to censure Bush over Iraq and torture allegations, seeking to create an select committee to investigate the administration’s intent to go to war prior to congressional authorization.

The intent — at the time — was to subpoena the President and other members of the administration in hopes of ascertaining if impeachable offenses have been committed.

In fact, the thought that Conyers was planning to push for impeachment if the Democrats took control of the House in 2006 was so strong that he penned an article in the Washington Post titled “No Rush to Impeachment.”

“As Republicans have become increasingly nervous about whether they will be able to maintain control of the House in the midterm elections, they have resorted to the straw-man strategy of identifying a parade of horrors to come if Democrats gain the majority,” Conyers wrote in May 2006. “Among these is the assertion that I, as the new chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, would immediately begin impeachment proceedings against President Bush.”

“I will not do that,” he added. “I readily admit that I have been quite vigorous, if not relentless, in questioning the administration. The allegations I have raised are grave, serious, well known, and based on reliable media reports and the accounts of former administration officials.”

Since then, Conyers has not ruled out impeachment proceedings. House Speaker Pelosi has.

“I have said it before and I will say it again: Impeachment is off the table,” Pelosi said during a news conference in 2006.

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. In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, the material on this site is distributed without profit to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving the included information for research and educational purposes. If you wish to use copyrighted material from this site for purposes of your own that go beyond ‘fair use’, you must obtain permission from the copyright owner.

see

Impeachment: What to do next (Action Alert)

Kucinich throws the gauntlet to Pelosi-Impeach (videos)

Nadler Will Investigate Torture, but Will He Impeach the Torturer-In-Chief?

Double Standards at the New York Times by Dave Lindorff

General claims Bush gave ‘marching orders’ on aggressive interrogation at Guantanamo by Nick Juliano

Dandelion Salad

by Nick Juliano
Raw Story
Monday October 22, 2007

New book says US uses ‘methods of the most tyrannical regimes’

More than 100,000 pages of newly released government documents demonstrate how US military interrogators “abused, tortured or killed” scores of prisoners rounded up since Sept. 11, 2001, including some who were not even suspected of having terrorist ties, according to a just-published book.

In Administration of Torture, two American Civil Liberties Union attorneys detail the findings of a years-long investigation and court battle with the administration that resulted in the release of massive amounts of data on prisoner treatment and the deaths of US-held prisoners.

“[T]he documents show unambiguously that the administration has adopted some of the methods of the most tyrannical regimes,” write Jameel Jaffer and Amrit Singh. “Documents from Guantanamo describe prisoners shackled in excruciating ‘stress positions,’ held in freezing-cold cells, forcibly stripped, hooded, terrorized with military dogs, and deprived of human contact for months.”

Most of the documents on which Administration of Torture is based were obtained as a result of ongoing legal fights over a Freedom of Information Act request filed in October 2003 by the ACLU and other human rights and anti-war groups, the ACLU said in a news release.

The documents show that prisoner abuse like that found at Abu Ghraib prison in Iraq was hardly the isolated incident that the Bush administration or US military claimed it was. By the time the prisoner abuse story broke in mid-2004 the Army knew of at least 62 other allegations of abuse at different prisons in Iraq and Afghanistan, the authors report.

Drawing almost exclusively from the documents, the authors say there is a stark contrast between the public statements of President Bush and then-Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld and the policies those and others in the administration were advocating behind the scenes.

President Bush gave “marching orders” to Gen. Michael Dunlavey, who asked the Pentagon to approve harsher interrogation methods at Guantanamo, the general claims in documents reported in the book.

The ACLU also found that an Army investigator reported Rumsfeld was “personally involved” in overseeing the interrogation of a Guantanamo prisoner Mohammed al Qahtani. The prisoner was forced to parade naked in front of female interrogators wearing women’s underwear on his head and was led around on a leash while being forced to perform dog tricks.

“It is imperative that senior officials who authorized, endorsed, or tolerated the abuse and torture of prisoners be held accountable,” Jaffer and Singh write, “not only as a matter of elemental justice, but to ensure that the same crimes are not perpetrated again.”

h/t: *RC_REVOLUTION [resistance]


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Kucinich ‘seriously thinking’ about forcing vote on Cheney impeachment by Nick Juliano (audio link)

Dandelion Salad

Nick Juliano
Raw Story
Published: Friday September 28, 2007

Rep. Dennis Kucinich says he is so concerned about what he sees as the Bush administration’s push for a war with Iran that he is considering using a parliamentary measure to force the House of Representatives to vote on impeaching Vice President Dick Cheney.”We’re preparing for another war, and they’re going to destroy America,” the Ohio Democrat said Thursday on the Ed Schultz show. “We have a government in place right now that has to be challenged. I’m seriously thinking about calling a privileged resolution on impeachment of the vice president and forcing a vote on the floor of the House.”

A privileged resolution would force the full House to debate about whether to proceed with impeachment, but it remains unclear precisely how, when or whether Kucinich would be able to introduce such a resolution. Privileged measures “may be called up on the floor whenever another measure is not already pending” and the House agrees to consider it, according to the Congressional Research Service.

Privileged measures can include questions of House privileges or resolutions of inquiry, according to the CRS report.

A conservative site set up to push for former President Bill Clinton’s impeachment lays out a strategy to bring such a measure to the House floor.

“According to Jerome Zeifman, however, it is possible that such a resolution could be called up for an immediate vote,” the Conservative Caucus site observes. “But that option appears to be within the control of the Speaker of the House and the Majority Leader.”

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, who took control after last year’s Democratic takeover of Congress, maintained that impeachment is “off the table” as recently as this week in an interview with CNN.

Kucinich introduced a resolution calling for Cheney’s impeachment this spring. Since then the bill has gained more than a dozen co-sponsors, but it seems to be dying a slow death in the House Judiciary Committee. It’s chairman, John Conyers, has stood with Pelosi in refusing to debate the impeachment resolution or bring it to the House floor for a vote.

A Kucinich spokeswoman declined to comment when contacted by RAW STORY. An official in the House Parliamentarian’s office did not return a call seeking comment.

The following audio clip is from The Ed Schultz Show, broadcast on September 27.

LINK

h/t: After Downing St

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Kucinich to Force Impeachment Vote on the House Floor

ImpeachForPeace.org
Sept. 27, 2007

This bombshell just dropped by Rep. Dennis Kucinich on the Ed Schultz show. Kucinich is considering forcing an impeachment vote on a “privileged resolution” on the floor of the U.S. House of Representatives.

“We’re preparing for another war, and they’re going to destroy America,” Rep. Dennis Kucinich said Thursday. “We have a government in place right now that has to be challenged. I’m seriously thinking about calling a privileged resolution on impeachment of the vice president and forcing a vote on the floor of the House.”

Time to call your representative and let him/her know that you will not support any candidate who doesn’t support accountability and the rule of law.

You can reach the Capitol switchboard toll-free at 1-800-426-8073.

More details to follow on this post as this news develops… As a result of this article, Impeach for Peace has been asked this question: What is a “privileged resolution?”

The following was found on InetResults.com:
1. High Constitutional Privilege.

In order to qualify as a resolution or memorial of high constitutional privilege, the House member must contain a “direct” or “positive” proposal to impeach. A mere proposition to investigate conduct of a civil officer does not qualify as a high constitutional privilege even though impeachment may be contemplated as a possibility or even if the resolution or memorial is presented with “a view to impeachment.” See IMPEACHMENT: Selected Materials pp. 66-71 (Sections 2045-2052) and pp. 767-69 (Sections 468-69).

A direct or positive proposal to impeach retains its high constitutional privilege even though the resolution or memorial proposing impeachment also contains a resolution that the impeachment matter be referred to an appropriate House Committee for inquiry or investigation. See IMPEACHMENT: Selected Materials pp. 67-69 (Sections 2046-48). At the same time the resolution calling for an investigation or inquiry cannot also request an appropriation for funds to support the investigation or inquiry. Id. at pp. 767-68 (Section 468).

A direct or positive proposal to impeach takes precedence over everything,” even over pending business before the House under a unanimous consent agreement. Id. at p. 770 (Section 469). Indeed, impeachment is a question of constitutional privilege which may be presented at any time irrespective of previous action of the House. Id. at 71 (Section 2053).

2. Rights of the House member Presenting a Privileged Impeachment Resolution.

A member submitting a privileged resolution, memorial or motion proposing impeachment is entitled to recognition for one hour in which to debate it. A member recognized to present a privileged resolution may not be taken from the floor by a motion to refer. IMPEACHMENT: Selected Materials p. 769 (Section 468). In order to secure this privilege of debate, however, the proposal must be put in writing and submitted to the Clerk of the House. Id. at pp. 770-71 (Section 470).

Once having submitted an impeachment resolution against a civil officer, then that member’s high privilege has expired. Id. at pp. 769-70 (Section 469). This rule apparently does not apply if the member files an amended impeachment resolution containing new charges or other new matters. Id. at 767-69 (Section 468).

3. Disposition of a Privileged Impeachment Resolution.

Even when an impeachment resolution does not contain within it a referral to a committee for inquiry or investigation, it appears to be the normal procedure for such a resolution to be referred to an appropriate committee — even when the resolution clearly has absolutely no support in the full House. IMPEACHMENT: Selected Materials pp. 769-70 (Section 469).

According to Jerome Zeifman, however, it is possible that such a resolution could be called up for an immediate vote; but that option appears to be within the control of the Speaker of the House and the Majority Leader. See Zeifman, Without Honor: The Impeachment of Richard Nixon and the Crimes of Camelot pp. 46-47 (1995). Hence, Congressman Robert Drinan’s Resolution impeaching Richard Nixon — filed on July 31, 1973 when there was absolutely no sentiment for impeachment was referred to the House Judiciary Committee. Later, on October 23 and 24, 1973, when 84 such resolutions were introduced, all were referred to the Judiciary Committee.

h/t: After Downing St

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Attorney General Gonzales to resign by David Edwards and Nick Juliano + Alberto Gonzales Resigns (video; link)

Dandelion Salad

David Edwards and Nick Juliano
Raw Story
Published: Monday August 27, 2007

Attorney General Alberto Gonzales announced his resignation Monday, ending months of calls that he would step down from the Justice Department over his role in the dismissal of federal prosecutors and role in expanding the power to spy on Americans.In a news conference Monday morning, Gonzales did not address the reasons for his resignation, and he refused to answer reporters’ shouted questions.

“Even my worst days at Attorney General have been better than my father’s best days,” said Gonzales, whose parents immigrated to Texas from Mexico before he was born.

Gonzales told President Bush of the resignation Friday and met with the president at his Crawford, Texas, ranch over the weekend, according to the New York Times, which first reported Gonzales’s resignation Monday.

Gonzales will leave office Sept. 17, he said.

Democrats and some Republicans in Congress have made increasingly vocal appeals for Gonzales’s resignation over the last several months. He has been accused of misleading House and Senate committees investigating his role in a federal prosecutor firing scandal and the National Security Agency’s warrantless wiretapping program.

In an apparent answer to critics who say Gonzales’s tenure at Justice has encouraged law enforcemet agencies to overstep their constitutional boundaries, Gonzales said Monday that he worked to ensure the “rights and civil liberties of our citizens are protected.”

“It’s a good day for justice in the United States,” David Iglesias, one of the fired US Attorneys, said on MSNBC Monday.

The Attorney General’s departure is the latest high-profile resignation within the Bush administration. The president’s top political adviser, Karl Rove, announced his resignation earlier this month.

Former Sen. John Edwards was the first Democratic presidential candidate to weigh in on the news of Gonzales’ resignation, which broke early Monday morning.

“Better late than never,” Edwards said in a prepared statement released by his campaign.

Critics said Gonzales’ resignation should not end Congressional — and possible criminal — inquiries into his alleged misconduct overseeing the Justice Department.

“Questions of whether Justice Department officials lied to Congress, conducted criminal inquiries to further political ends and made hiring decisions based on political affiliation still merit investigation regardless of Mr. Gonzales’ resignation,” said Melanie Sloan, executive director of the independent watchdog group Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington. “Just as former House Majority Leader Tom DeLay’s resignation did not impede the ongoing criminal investigation into his conduct while a member of Congress, so Mr. Gonzales’ departure should not stop … probes into the illegal actions of our nation’s top ranking law enforcement officials.”

Those inquiries should continue in the House Judiciary Committee, where Gonzales has testified several times, its chairman said Monday.

“More than accountability, we need answers. Unfortunately, the continued stonewalling of the White House in the U.S. Attorney scandal has deprived the American people of the truth,” Rep. John Conyers (D-MI) said in a prepared statement. “If the power of the prosecutor has been misused in the name of partisanship, we deserve a full airing of the facts. The responsibility to uncover these facts is still on the Congress, and the Judiciary Committee in particular.”

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid echoed that sentiment in a separate statement.

“This resignation is not the end of the story,” Reid said. “Congress must get to the bottom of this mess and follow the facts where they lead, into the White House.”

As news of Gonzales’ resignation emerged, speculation centered on who would become his replacement for the remaining 17 months of President Bush’s term. A top candidate is Department of Homeland Security head Michael Chertoff.

Sen. Charles Schumer (D-NY), a prominent member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, said Democrats would be willing to work with the White House to confirm a new attorney general.

“What we Democrats have always said is that we need somebody in this department … who will put rule of law above all others, rule of law above any political consideration,” Schumer said on CNN Monday. “… Our attitude is going to be one of cooperation.”

A senior administration official told the Times that Bush has not yet selected a replacement but will not leave the position vacant long. Bush “grudgingly” accepted Gonzales’ resignation, the Times reported.

Gonzales’s resignation is expected to be announced officially in a 10:30 a.m. news conference Monday.

The Times reports that Justice Department and White House spokesmen were denying reports of an imminent resignation as recently as Sunday afternoon. Judiciary Committee aides told the Times they had received no indication over the weekend that Gonzales would resign.

Fox News reported Monday morning that US Solicitor General Paul Clement could be appointed as a temporary replacement.

Developing…

Gonzales makes official statement of resignation:

Vodpod videos no longer available. from rawstory.com posted with vodpod

.

LINK

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.

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Alberto Gonzales Resigns


Veracifier
Aug. 27, 2007

Press statement on resignation, August 27, 2007


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Attorney General Alberto Gonzales Resigns

Howard Schneider | The Washington Post | August 27, 2007

On Mariné’s Blog

see:

Sen. Chuck Schumer Statement on Gonzales Resignation + Bush on Gonzales Resignation (videos)

The Democrats’ responsibility in the wake of Gonzales’ resignation by Glenn Greenwald

Daily Show explores mysteries of missing stuff in Iraq by David Edwards and Nick Juliano (video link)

Dandelion Salad

by David Edwards and Nick Juliano
Raw Story
Published: Friday August 10, 2007

Daily Show host Jon Stewart has a novel explanation for the fact that the military has lost nearly 200,000 firearms in Iraq.

The military says the misplacement of 190,000 AK-47s and pistols was just a “clerical error.” Stewart tries to clarify that explanation by displaying “Army Field Weaponry Procurement Form 1-A-3,” which has two boxes; check one for “lose these,” and another for “don’t lose these.” Turns out the Army just checked the wrong box.

“This is not the first mysterious happening of our four-year venture in Iraq,” Stewart notes, citing previous disappearances of 380 tons of explosives, $12 billion in cash and 300,000 barrels of oil per day.

“How does this happen?” he asks. “Explosives, guns, oil, money. These aren’t things people would just take for no reason, and they they’ve vanished without a trace in Iraq. Coincidence? Or profound incompetence?

“I say neither,” Stewart continues. “As a geographical cartologist — amature — I believe the unique topographical features of Iraq form a natural — but extremely powerful — magicians hat.”

The satirical host says if we could just “reach our hands deep enough into the sands of the Euphrates, we would find the money, the weapons, the oil and — let’s say — 40 percentage points of President Bush’s approval rating.”

LINK


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.

Cindy Sheehan announces she’ll run against Nancy Pelosi by Nick Juliano and Michael Roston

Dandelion Salad

by Nick Juliano and Michael Roston
Raw Story
Published: Monday July 23, 2007

Anti-Iraq War activist Cindy Sheehan announced in Washington on Monday afternoon that she would challenge Democratic House Speaker Nancy Pelosi in the 2008 Congressional election.”The Democrats will not hold this administration accountable so we have to hold them accountable and I for one will step up to the plate and run against Nancy Pelosi,” Sheehan told a cheering crowd on Capitol Hill.

Sheehan brought a petition calling for the impeachment of President George W. Bush and Vice President Dick Cheney to the office of Rep. John Conyers (D-MI), Chairman of the House Judiciary Committee.

According to Sheehan, Conyers said that there were not enough votes to impeach the President or Vice President, and so he did not intend to hold hearings on the impeachment resolution introduced by Rep. Dennis Kucinich (D-OH). The Ohio Democrat’s Articles target the Vice President.

A spokesperson for the Congressman would not confirm the details of the meeting with RAW STORY, but agreed that Rep. Conyers said the resolution would not advance.

The anti-war activist, who became prominent after initiating peace vigils near President Bush’s Crawford, Texas ranch, then conducted a sit-in at Conyers’ congressional office, where she was later arrested by Capitol police.

Sheehan and a group of two to three hundred supporters marched to Capitol Hill from the Arlington National Cemetery. Sheehan is the mother of Casey Sheehan, an Army Specialist who was killed in the Iraq War.

While Sheehan has considerably greater national prominence, she is not the first progressive candidate to challenge Pelosi. In the 2006 Congressional election, Pelosi faced Green Party candidate Krissy Keefer, who received 8% of the vote in Pelosi’s San Francisco district. The Speaker received 80% of the vote.

Daily Kos diarist Bob Fertik offered further details of the Conyers-Sheehan exchange at this link.

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.