U.N. rights chief urges Obama to prosecute torturers 14 May 2009
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Thu May 14 20:24:50 EDT 2009
Breaking News and Commentary from Citizens For Legitimate Government
14 May 2009
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Breaking: US House backs $96.7 bln bill for Iraq, Afghan, Pakistan wars 14 May 2009 The U.S. House of Representatives on Thursday approved a $96.7 billion measure to fund the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan through Sept. 30 as well as rush critical economic and security aid [?] to Pakistan. The biggest chunk is $47.7 billion to support military operations in Iraq and Afghanistan through Sept. 30. Obama had originally requested in total $84.3 billion. It also includes $1 billion for Pakistan as it tries to fight militant Taliban 'insurgents.'
U.N. rights chief urges Obama to prosecute torturers 14 May 2009 The U.N. High Commissioner for Human Rights on Thursday welcomed the election of the United States to the top United Nations rights forum and urged it to prosecute those accused of torture and other abuses. Navi Pillay said Washington should investigate all U.S. renditions of terrorism suspects and ensure any interrogators who mistreated them are brought to justice for violating an international ban on torture.
Speaker Pelosi: CIA, Bush team misled on waterboarding 14 May 2009 Under strong attack from Republicans, the leader of the U.S. House of Representatives, Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calf.), accused the CIA and Bush administration of misleading her about waterboarding detainees and sharply rebutted claims she was complicit in its use. "To the contrary ... we were told explicitly that waterboarding was not being used," she said, referring to a formal CIA briefing she received in late 2002.
Pelosi accuses CIA of misleading her on use of waterboarding 14 May 2009 House Speaker Nancy Pelosi accused CIA officials Thursday of misleading her in 2002 about the use of "enhanced interrogation techniques" such as waterboarding, which simulates drowning and has been described by critics as torture. Pelosi reiterated an earlier claim that she was briefed on such techniques only once -- in September 2002 -- and that she was told at the time that the techniques were not being used.
Indefinite Detention Weighed 14 May 2009 The Obama administration [soon to be dubbed 'regime' by the CLG] is weighing plans to detain some terror suspects on U.S. soil -- indefinitely and without trial -- as part of a plan to retool military tribunal trials that were conducted for prisoners held in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. The proposal is being floated with members of Congress... Sen. Lindsay Graham (R., S.C.), who met this week with White House Counsel Greg Craig to discuss the administration's plans, said among the proposals being studied is seeking authority for indefinite detentions, with the imprimatur of some type of national-security court.
'It's perfectly Orwellian... It's just more evidence that this Administration is becoming the greatest bait-and-switch in history. He's morphing into his predecessor.' --Law Professor Jonathan Turley, referring to Barack Obama 13 May 2009 (MSNBC)
Obama refuses to publicise army abuse photos 13 May 2009 US President Barack Obama has refused the release of photographs of detainee abuse in Iraq and Afghanistan. President Obama has told reporters that while the photos depict behaviour that did not conform with US Army rules of conduct, the people responsible for the offences have been dealt with.
Obama bows to Republican right and military on torture photos By Bill Van Auken 14 May 2009 The Obama administration’s decision Wednesday to renege on its promise to comply with a court order and release photographs of US personnel torturing detainees in Iraq and Afghanistan represents another capitulation by his administration to mounting pressure from the right and the military-intelligence apparatus... He claimed that the images are "not particularly sensational" and "would not add any additional benefit to our understanding of what was carried out in the past by a small number of individuals." Obama failed to explain what makes the US president the arbiter of what is of "benefit to our understanding."
Quick action! Tell President Obama you support transparency and accountability. (ACLU) 13 May 2009 The very fact that photos of torture and abuse exist, only underscores the need for transparency, accountability and for a full investigation of crimes committed. The President... needs to hear from concerned citizens like you. Join the ACLU in calling on President Obama to put the full weight of his leadership behind our call for transparency and accountability. (Petition)
Reid says no plan no Guantanamo closure 14 May 2009 The US Senate will not provide funding to close the Guantanamo Bay prison facility until President Barack Obama provides a concrete proposal on doing so. "There will be nothing happening until a plan comes from the president," Majority Leader, Harry Reid, told reporters on Thursday. The Senate Appropriations Committee is considering Obama's request for USD 80m to shutter the controversial detention center by January 22, 2010, and attach strict conditions to its closing.
The CIA is hiring: Experienced Torturers Needed - (no Muslims need apply) By Jack Rabbit 13 May 2009 Take a look at this article regarding torture of prisoners in the custody of MY GOVERNMENT! From the article: "Who the hell authorizes these things?" Soufan reportedly asked the chief CIA officer in Thailand, as Mitchell began stripping the prisoner and blasting him with music from the Red Hot Chili Peppers." So here I sit, with only news articles to tell me what my government is up to. (That would be torture.) Thankfully there are some brave souls willing to become "whistleblowers" because their conscience prevents restful sleep knowing torture is going on at the hands of the government of the land of the free and the home of the brave.
60-year-old Army soldier is oldest killed in Iraq --Ariz. man was Vietnam vet who decided to re-enlist after 9/11 attacks 14 May 2009 A 60-year-old Vietnam War veteran who was killed by a roadside bomb in Iraq has become the oldest Army soldier to die in that conflict, the military said Thursday. An Associated Press database of soldiers killed in Iraq and Afghanistan shows that Maj. Steven Hutchison, of Scottsdale, Ariz., is the oldest member of any service branch killed since the wars broke out.
Pirate attacks pass 2008 mark 14 May 2009 Piracy attacks off the Somali coast since January have surpassed the number for all of 2008, according to the International Maritime Bureau. The Piracy Reporting Center at IMB recorded 111 piracy incidents in 2008 in the Gulf of Aden and off the Somali coast. So far this year, the center has documented 114 attempted attacks, including 29 successful hijackings, the IMB reported. [See: Somali pirates guided by London intelligence team, report says 11 May 2009.]
Singapore Air Force arrives in Mountain Home 13 May 2009 The world outside Idaho got a little bit smaller Wednesday, as four F-15SG fighter jets flown from St. Louis by the Republic of Singapore Air Force landed between rainstorms at Mountain Home Air Force Base. Greeted by a cheering crowd of more than 100 military personnel from both Singapore and the U.S., the four jets are the first of as many as 10 that will call the airbase home for at least the next 20 years. More than 300 active-duty and support personnel will make up the 428th Fighter Squadron and train alongside American pilots as part of a partnership between the two countries - though they will not fly on missions.
Nuclear Surety Inspection begins at Minot AFB 14 May 2009 A Nuclear Surety Inspection was initiated Wednesday at Minot Air Force Base. The inspection team is led by a senior officer representative from the Air Combat Command Inspector General's office with oversight provided by representatives from the Air Force Inspection Agency and the office of the Secretary of the Air Force. This no-notice inspection is expected to conclude May 22. [A 'no-notice' inspection? Look for the Minot AFB Clandestine Nukes 'Oddities' page to grow in the aftermath of that one. --LRP]
Quick action! Keep your promise, President Obama --Tell the President to end "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" policy and not fire Lt. Dan Choi (Courage Campaign) 14 May 2009 Lt. Dan Choi, from Orange County, California, is a graduate of the U.S. Military Academy at West Point and an Iraq War veteran. Last March he went on Rachel Maddow's show and spoke three truthful words: "I am gay." As a result Lt. Choi received a letter from the Army on April 23 discharging him for violating the "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" policy... Lt. Choi is fighting to stay in the military and ensure that no other soldier is ever again discharged as a result of "Don't Ask, Don't Tell." President Obama did not create this policy. But he now has the opportunity to keep his promise and allow gay and lesbian soldiers to serve openly in the military. It's the right thing to do -- for justice and for national security. (Petition)
Britain has freed more than half of those arrested as terrorism suspects 14 May 2009 More than half of those arrested on suspicion of terrorism-related offenses in Britain since Sept. 11, 2001, have been freed without being charged, according to government statistics released Wednesday. Of the 1,471 people detained, 521 were charged and 196 of those were convicted of terrorism-related charges, the British Home Office survey shows; 819 were released without being charged. Some were charged with offenses not related to terrorism, such as theft, fraud or an expired visa. The report does not say how many of those were convicted.
Scouts Train to Fight Terrorists, and More --In a competition in Arizona, one role-player wore traditional Arab dress. 14 May 2009 But the more than 2,000 law enforcement posts across the country are the Explorers’ most popular, accounting for 35,000 of the group’s 145,000 members, said John Anthony, national director of Learning for Life. Since the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, and the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, many posts have taken on an emphasis of fighting terrorism and other less conventional threats... The law enforcement posts are restricted to those ages 14 to 21 who have a C average, but there seems to be some wiggle room. [Stupid little fascists with guns - just what we need.]
San Mateo man with tuberculosis faces charge for disobeying quarantine --His resistance to complying with doctors prompted a formal public health order May 6 from county health officer Dr. Scott Morrow. 12 May 2009 A 60-year-old man who was being treated for tuberculosis at Kaiser Permanente Medical Center in Redwood City faces a criminal charge for repeatedly disobeying a quarantine order from the San Mateo County Health Department. Charles Dvorak was diagnosed with contagious tuberculosis after being admitted to the hospital April 27 for a severe cough.
Scientist: Swine Flu Could Have Come From Bio-Experiment Lab --World Health Organization Investigates Claims by Australian Scientist 14 May 2009 An Australian researcher claims the swine flu, which has killed at least 64 people so far, might not be a mutation that occurred naturally but a man-made product of genetic experiments accidentally leaked from a laboratory. Adrian Gibbs, a scientist on the team that was behind the development of Tamiflu, says in a report he is submitting today that swine flu might have been created using eggs to grow viruses and make new vaccines, and could have been accidentally [purposefully] leaked to the general public.
Scientist arrested for smuggling vials used in Ebola research into US --Yao told US border guards he was taking them to his new job with the National Institutes of Health at the Biodefense Research Laboratory in Bethesda, MD. 13 May 2009 A Canadian scientist has been arrested for smuggling 22 vials stolen from Canada's National Microbiology Lab, used in Ebola and HIV research, into the United States, Canadian and US officials said Wednesday. Konan Michel Yao "was taken into custody" while crossing the border from Manitoba province into the western US state of North Dakota on May 5, said a spokeswoman for the Public Health Agency of Canada, which operates the lab. According to US prosecutor Lynn Jordheim, Yao was detained for carrying unidentified biological materials in vials wrapped in aluminum foil inside a glove and packaged in a plastic bag, along with electrical wires, in the trunk of his car.
China seeks passengers with exposure to new A/H1N1 flu case 14 May 2009 China's Ministry of Health confirmed Wednesday a Shandong man has tested positive for the A/H1N1 flu and authorities are seeking plane and train passengers who had exposure to the man. The case, the second of its kind on the Chinese mainland, involved a 19-year-old student who arrived in Beijing from Canada May 8 and traveled to Jinan, provincial capital of Shandong, three days later in a train labeled D41.
NYC closing schools to deal with big flu outbreak 14 May 2009 New York City has closed three schools in response to a swine flu outbreak that has left one staff member in critical condition and sent hundreds of kids home with flu symptoms, in a flare-up of the deadly virus that sent shock waves through the world last month.
No. of new influenza patients tops 6,000 worldwide; 65 dead 14 May 2009 The number of people infected with a new strain of influenza has topped 6,000 in 35 countries and territories around the globe as of early Thursday, according to government announcements and media reports. The number of people infected with the H1N1 virus has come to 6,465.
Detroit fund sues Halliburton, KBR 14 May 2009 The Detroit Policemen & Firemen Retirement System filed a lawsuit in U.S. District Court in Houston today against oil field services provider Halliburton Co. and its one-time subsidiary KBR Inc., accusing Halliburton’s board of directors of breach of fiduciary duty for misdeeds and corruption resulting in damage to investors’ holdings. The lawsuit, brought on behalf of the retirement system by Wilmington, Del.-based law firm Grant & Eisenhofer P.A. and Houston-based Lanier Law Firm, names current and former directors of Halliburton [Cheney?] as defendants.
'The saver is going to start rebelling.' Billionaire Rupert Says Crisis May Provoke Unrest, Inflation Share 14 May 2009 South African billionaire Johann Rupert said the financial crisis may lead to inflation and social unrest as savers find they’re too poor to retire, while pension-fund managers deserve to be jailed for incompetence. Rupert, speaking at the annual presentation for Cie. Financiere Richemont SA, the luxury-goods company he controls, said he doesn’t see any "green shoots" of economic recovery... Rupert told analysts at the meeting that they’re too young to remember Red Brigade terrorism in Italy or the 1968 Paris uprisings, when the French state sent tanks into the streets. "Things can get volatile very quickly," he said.
Credit card reform bill slows in U.S. Senate 14 May 2009 A credit card reform bill that would ban arbitrary interest rate hikes remained stalled in the Senate on Thursday as Democratic and Republican leaders negotiated amendments to be offered by lawmakers. "I hope that we can pass it before we leave next Friday for our recess," Senate Democratic Leader Harry Reid told reporters.
US: Cuts in Social Security, Medicare to pay for bank bailouts By Tom Eley 14 May 2009 A government report made public Tuesday indicates that Social Security and Medicare will deplete their trust funds more quickly than previously forecast. This has sparked new demands from within the US financial elite for substantial cuts in the two entitlement programs, which pay retirement and medical benefits for tens of millions of working class Americans. The report was issued by the programs’ trustees, a group of four Obama administration officials headed by Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner.
Anger, sadness as ax falls on Chrysler dealers 14 May 2009 Dealers across the United States reacted with a mixture of anger and sadness on Thursday to word that bankrupt automaker Chrysler LLC plans to eliminate franchise agreements with them as part of its restructuring efforts. But most, even those surprised by the news, entertained little hope they could stop Chrysler from following through on the proposed closures...
Gov. proposes selling L.A. Coliseum, other properties to raise cash 14 May 2009 Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger [R-Installed] wants to sell the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum, San Quentin State Prison, the Orange County Fairgrounds and other state property to raise cash amid the state's growing fiscal crisis, according to a copy of a proposal reviewed by The Times. Sale of the properties, to be included in the governor's revised budget plan today, would raise between $600 million and $1 billion, although it would not provide financial relief for two to five years, according to the proposal.
Obama Delivers Inspirational Message to Class of 2009 14 May 2009 U.S. President Barack Obama has delivered his first commencement address since taking office, a speech to the graduating class of Arizona State University. President Obama told the graduating class at Arizona State that what drives them through life should not be money, celebrity or power, but a higher calling. Mr. Obama got a warm welcome in this university in the desert.
Pageant official quits over Miss California move 14 May 2009 In the latest twist in a scandal that has rocked an American beauty pageant, a former Miss USA [Shanna Moakler] has resigned as co-executive of the Miss California USA competition following owner Donald Trump's decision to let the state's controversial title holder keep her crown. Trump said that Carrie Prejean could retain her Miss California USA crown even after questions arose about semi-nude photographs taken of her as a teenager and her association with an anti-gay marriage group.
Salazar Waterboards Polar Bears By Joe Alterio (NRDC) 14 May 2009 (Editorial cartoon)
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Previous lead stories: Obama U-turn on abuse photographs 13 May 2009 US President Barack Obama has changed his mind and will now attempt to block the publication of photographs showing the abuse of prisoners by US soldiers. The US government had previously said it would not fight a court ruling ordering the release of the pictures. Mr Obama now believes the release of the photos would make the job of US troops in Iraq and Afghanistan more difficult, White House officials said.
Obama threatens to limit US intel with UK over Guantanamo torture --Justice letter filed in court 12 May 2009 The Bush Obama administration says it may curtail Anglo-American intelligence sharing if the British High Court discloses new details of the treatment of a former Guantanamo prisoner. A court filing from the British Foreign Office released recently includes a letter from the U.S. government, identified as the "Obama administration's communication." At issue is whether the British courts will disclose a seven-paragraph summary of the treatment of Binyam Mohamed, a former prisoner who was released from Guantanamo Bay prison in February. Mr. Mohamed says he was tortured while in U.S., Pakistani and Moroccan custody.
U.S. military, Pakistan carrying out Predator drone missions together --The Pakistanis have yet to use the drones to shoot at suspected militants and are ambivalent over using U.S. equipment to fire on their own people. 12 May 2009 The U.S. military has begun flying armed Predator drones inside Pakistan and has given Pakistani officers significant control over targets, flight routes and decisions to launch attacks under a new joint operation, according to U.S. officials familiar with the program. Under the new partnership, U.S. military drones will be allowed for the first time to venture beyond the borders of Afghanistan under the direction of Pakistani military officials, who are working with American counterparts at a command center in Jalalabad, Afghanistan.
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CLG Managing Editor: Lori Price. Copyright © 2009, Citizens For Legitimate Government ® All rights reserved.
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