COLUMN SIXTY-SEVEN, JANUARY 1, 2002
(Copyright © 2002 Al Aronowitz)
Carlos Geovanny - We Will Not Forget
from the National University at Bogota, Colombia was shot dead when police
forces invaded university campus. At about noon, there were clashes between
students protesting war in Afganistan and police forces. Then a shot was heard.
Medicine student Carlos Geovanny Blanco Leguizamo was found wounded by
the shot and taken to the hospital. He died a few moments later.
University has cancelled classes for today and tomorrow. Carlos was part of a
growing network of independent activists in Colombia fighting economic
globalization and the war at Afganistan. Police deny they were the authors of
the shootings but many witness assure the shot came from behind police lines.
Corporate media in Colombia have almost ignored the case. Please don't let this
be forgotten. Send letters and protest at the nearest Colombian embassy or
consulate. After Carlo Giuliani is with sadness that we see an
anti-globalization/ anti-war protester shot dead in South America.
Brazil Independent Media Center Volunteer
Gulf of Tonkin Was a Lie
Johnson admitted in a secret tape recording that the incident he used to win
congressional approval for the Vietnam war probably never happened, according to
a book published yesterday.
In 1964, days
after an alleged North Vietnamese attack on US destroyers in the Gulf of Tonkin,
Congress approved a resolution authorizing the President to take all necessary
steps, including the use of force to help America's southeast Asian allies.
the Gulf of Tonkin resolution to drag America ever deeper into the Vietnam war,
to the consternation of many Congressmen.
In a secret
recording Johnson berated Robert McNamara, his Defense Secretary, for misleading
him. You said: Damn, they are launching an attack on us, they are firing on us.
When we got through with all the firing, we concluded maybe they hadn't fired at
The book, Reaching
for Glory, was edited by the historian Michael Beschloss from Johnson's
tapes and the diary of Lady Bird, his wife.
November 7, 2001
In an unusual political alignment, several potential Democratic presidential
contenders in 2004 are urging President Bush to intensify and expand the war
criticizing Bush's management of the war so far, Sens. Joseph I. Lieberman of
Connecticut, John F. Kerry of Massachusetts and Joseph R. Biden Jr. of Delaware
in varying ways have taken positions more hawkish than the president. On issues
from the use of ground troops in Afghanistan to the targeting of Iraq and policy
toward Saudi Arabia, Lieberman and Kerry in particular have echoed conservative
activists pressing Bush to pursue the war more aggressively.
certain ways, Lieberman and . . . Kerry have been closer to us than parts of the
Bush administration," said conservative strategist William Kristol, a
leader among Republicans hawks.
November 9 2001
Fun Facts About Anthrax
Cost of a 60-day supply in the U.S. of the anthrax-fighting
Cost of a generic alternative, not available in the U.S. due to
of profits made by U.S. pharmaceutical industry last year, in
Amount that U.S. consumers would save if imports of generic
Amount that George Bush is willing to reduce costs of Cipro by
Amount that Georgie Porgie Bush received from the pharmaceutical
Number of former drug company executives in Bush's cabinet: 2
Exciting New Game For Children
broadcasts into Afghanistan now include a safety warning:
airdropped food parcels are square, unexploded
cluster bombs are can-shaped, and both are yellow,
so it is important to tell them apart.
people of Afghanistan!" the broadcasts in Persian and Pashto say. "As
you may have heard, the Partnership of Nations is dropping yellow Humanitarian
are full of good nutritious, Halal food," prepared according to Islamic
precepts. "In areas far from where we are dropping food, we are dropping
cluster bombs," the radio spots say, according to a transcript obtained on
Monday. "Although it is unlikely, it is possible that not every bomb will
explode on impact. These bombs are a yellow color and are can-shaped ...
again, we will not be using these bombs in areas near where we are dropping
relief supplies. Please, please exercise caution when approaching unidentified
yellow objects in areas that have been recently bombed."
Chagos islanders, who were evicted from the Indian Ocean archipelago by Britain
three decades ago, have launched a round-the-clock protest outside
Chagossians, who were removed between 1965 and 1973 to make way for a US
military base on Diego Garcia, the largest of the islands, claim that they have
been prevented from returning, despite a landmark victory in the High Court in
London against the British Government. Diego Garcia has been a launching point
for American B52 bombers pounding Afghanistan.
4,500 islanders and their descendants have been languishing on Mauritius since
their expulsion from what was known as the British Indian Ocean
WEDNESDAY NOVEMBER 07 2001
Some More Space
7, 2001 -- (dpa) The United States has established its first long-term military
presence in a former Soviet republic, television reports in
agreement signed one month ago between the Uzbek government and Washington, U.S.
forces may continue to use a military air base in the republic even after
conclusion of the anti-terrorist operations in Afghanistan, the reports said.
of the agreement signed in Tashkent October 7 were not released.
U.S. military presence in the region will annoy Moscow, which still regards the
former Soviet republics as falling within its perceived sphere of influence.
murals cover the cracked walls of the Callej?n de Hamel, or Hamel's Alley,
where one artist turned a couple of blighted blocks into an outdoor shrine to
Salvador Gonz?lez's radiant, swirling murals stretch three stories high. Their
bright colors evoke Santeria's deities: red for Chang?, yellow for Och?n, blue
poetry and popular proverbs are written alongside allegorical paintings
referring to Santeria's legends. Large, protective eyes are a recurring symbol.
and his wife, Maritza Galano, moved to the alley in 1971, when the sidewalks
were piled high with trash and it was a poorly lighted hangout for neighborhood
Santeria -- a blend of West African rituals with Roman Catholic saints -- has
strong roots here, it was driven underground after the 1959 revolution along
with all other religions. A self-taught artist and Santeria practitioner, Gonz?lez
painted his first mural in the alley in 1990 as a favor to a friend. Soon after,
he realized he could use his art to bring Santeria out of central Havana's back
rooms, where it was practiced in secret, and into the public eye.
The CIA tried
to discover Russia's Cold War secrets by installing bugging devices in a cat and
using its tail as an antenna.
declassified documents show agents inserted the transmitters into the cat they
called Acoustic Kitty.
officer says the experiment - carried out in 1966 - ended when the cat was run
the cat would allow them to listen to secret conversations from window sills and
Marchetti told The Sunday Telegraph: "They slit the cat open, put batteries
in him, wired him up. The tail was used as an antenna. They made a monstrosity.
They tested him and tested him. They found he would walk off the job when he got
hungry, so they put another wire in to override that."
"They took it out to a park and put him out of the van, and a taxi comes
and runs him over. There they were, sitting in the van with all those dials, and
the cat was dead."
has been declassified from the Science and Technology Directorate.
Just Being Hungry-Like
Hit 415,000 as Rate Jumps to 5.4 Percent
The jolt to
the U.S. labor market from the September terrorist attacks and their aftermath
was more severe than generally predicted as businesses reduced payrolls by
415,000 and the unemployment rate vaulted to 5.4 percent in October, according
to figures released by the Bureau of Labor Statistics. It was the largest job
loss total since May of 1980.
jobs numbers are "recession-like" to forecasters, says Maury
November 5, 2001,
War Means $$ for the Fat Cats
" General Motors, IBM and Kmart are among corporations that would receive
billions of dollars in tax refunds under a $100 billion House Republican
economic-stimulus package. Democrats say it is far too generous to companies and
does too little for individuals.
companies would get a total of $3.3 billion in refunds of alternative minimum
taxes they paid as far back as 1986. The tax, which the House legislation also
would repeal outright, is intended to ensure a basic minimum income tax is paid
by companies and individuals that claim numerous deductions and credits.
IBM would get
a $1.4 billion refund, according to the nonpartisan Congressional Research
Service. GM would get $832 million, Kmart $102 million and General Electric $671
million. Others specified for big refunds include energy giant Enron, at $254
million; U.S. Steel, $39 million; and grocery chain Kroger, $9 million.
the study found that Ford would get a refund that could total
repeal of the tax, corporations would get more than $25 billion in tax relief
from these minimum-tax provisions in 2002 alone. In addition, the bill would
make permanent a temporary tax break for financial-services firms doing a lot of
overseas business, providing them $21 billion in tax relief over 10 years.
Date: Sat, 03
The Associated Press
Fun Facts About Tax Theft
corporations that will receive a total of $7.4 billion in immediate Alternative
Minimum Tax (AMT) rebates if the economic "stimulus" bill recently
passed by the House of Representatives becomes law are also major campaign
contributors, giving $45.7 million to federal elections since 1991, according to
a new report released today by Citizens for Tax Justice (CTJ), the Institute on
Taxation and Economic Policy (ITEP), and Public Campaign.
examines 41 companies that contributed a total of $150 million to federal
candidates and parties since 1991 while, between 1996 and 1998 alone, receiving
$55 billion in special tax breaks. Several of these same companies are in line
to be major beneficiaries if the AMT repeal in the recently passed
findings of the study include:
Members of Congressional tax-writing committees "
the House Ways and Means and Senate Finance
Committees " collected $9.7 million from top tax-
avoiding companies since 1991. The top recipients
include Senate Finance Committee Members Sen. Orrin
Hatch (R-UT), who received $355,430, and Sen. John
B. Breaux (D-LA), who received $251,150.
After the GOP took over Congress in 1994 " and
control of writing tax laws " top tax-avoiding
companies sharply increased their contributions to
the Republican Party and its candidates. In the 1992
and 1994 election cycles, the GOP received 54
percent of the contributions from these companies
while the Democrats received 45 percent. By the 2000
election cycle, Republican candidates and party
committees received more than twice as much campaign
cash as the Democrats. Thus, campaign cash followed
the power to make laws the companies wanted " not
any ideological preference or principle.
Energy industries that will collect about $27
billion over ten years, if the energy bill passed by
the House of Representatives in August 2001 becomes
law, contributed $209 million to political campaigns
from 1989 through June 2001. The oil and gas
industry already pays the lowest effective tax rate
of any industry in America " just 5.7 percent in
The "Big Five" accounting firms, which beefed up
their tax lobbying practices in the late 1990s and
built a reputation for securing tax loopholes for
corporate clients from Congress and the Treasury
Department, are also major campaign contributors.
They contributed $29 million to federal candidates
and party committees from 1989 through June 2001.
Industries benefiting from a special tax credit for
research and experimentation (R&E) costs poured $148
million into political campaigns and parties from
1989 through June 2001. The pharmaceutical and
computer industries are pushing hard to make the R&E
tax credit permanent. One of their major champions,
Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-UT), received more than half a
million dollars from these industries between 1995
and 2000. Five days after Hatch offered an amendment
in committee in July 1999 to make the credit
permanent, he received a bundle totaling $10,000
from a who's-who list of top Pfizer executives.
Date: Fri, 9
From: portsideMod <email@example.com>
Two Lawyers on an Island
had been marooned on a desert island for almost a year after their ship had sunk
during a terrible storm. One day while walking along the beach, the two lawyers
find a beautiful unconscious woman washed up on the shore.
lawyer asks the second lawyer, "Think we should fuck her?", and the
second lawyer replies,
Our Friends in Afghanistan
Taliban soldiers by the thousands into the desert and shot them.
threw into wells, then tossed grenades in after them.
massacre represents just one charge from a new Human Rights Watch report
detailing alleged war crimes by America's ally in Afghanistan, the
senior commanders are really beyond the pale," says Human Rights
hardly the first time the U.S. has gotten into bed with less-than-savory
characters in the name of short-term strategic needs. During the '80s, the U.S.
armed and trained Islamic fundamentalist guerrillas?including Osama bin
Laden'to beat back the Soviet Union in Afghanistan.
As the Human
Rights Watch report demonstrates, the civil war compromised virtually every
faction in Afghanistan. Hiltermann says the U.S. should at least try to pinpoint
and isolate the worst offenders, but instead the White House has thrown in its
lot with a rogues' gallery of brutal warlords. Their ability to govern
Afghanistan humanely is, at best, dubious.
ETHNIC BASE COMMANDERS ALLEGED ATROCITIES:
Islami Tajik Ahmad Shah Massoud,Burhanuddin Rabbani
- Rape and
looting in a Hazara neighborhood of Kabul, March 1995
between 76 and 180 civilians in a nighttime rocket attack on a market, September
1998 Hizb-i Wahdat Hazara Muhammad Karim Khalili Haji Muhammad Muaqqiq* "
Routine torture and execution of detainees in Bamiyan Province, circa 1994
Junbish militias Uzbek Abdul Rashid Dostum* Abdel Malik Pahlawan* " Summary
execution of 3000 Taliban soldiers in and around Mazar-e Sharif, May 1997
air raid on residential areas of Kabul killed several civilians Ittihad-i Islami
Pashtun, Abdul Rasul Sayyaf,Harakat-I IGeneralslami-yi Hazara Ayatollah
Muhammad, Asif Muhsini, Anwari Jamiat-i Islami and Ittihad-i Islami Tajik and
Pashtun - Rape and killing of between 70 and 100 Hazara civilians in Kabul,
factions - Killing of 25,000 civilians in struggle for Kabul. Several factions
engaged in widespread rape, summary executions, arbitrary arrest, torture, and
''disappearances'' of civilians, circa 1994.
factions involved in persecution of ethnic Pashtuns and Tajiks, including
summary executions, looting, and burning of houses in the Sangcharak district,
1999 and 2000
named individually by Human Rights Watch
November 7 - 13, 2001
The Constitution of the United States Is in Jeopardy
postponed an interview with Court TV Monday afternoon. She was trying to catch
up on her schoolwork and earn enough credits to become a high school sophomore.
unsuccessful attempts to start an anarchy club at Sissonville High School and
wear T-shirts opposing the bombing of Afghanistan have generated national and
international attention during the past several days.
has been interviewed by YM magazine, Hispanic Link news service, the Weekly
Reader and several talk-radio stations.
MTV plans to
interview Sierra this week. And TV Asahi, a Japanese television network, plans
to send a reporting crew to Sissonville.
In San Diego,
students at a high school and two universities are circulating petitions in
support of Sierra.
the first incident we've had of suppressing speech since the war started,"
said Roger Forman, Sierra's attorney. "It's all the more important that
something be done. The whole world is looking at us."
Forman requested an emergency hearing before the state Supreme Court.
Constitution of the United States is in jeopardy," he said.
Kanawha Circuit Judge James Stucky sided with the Kanawha County school board,
saying Sierra and her attorneys failed to prove the irreparable harm needed to
grant a preliminary injunction.
before, Sissonville High Principal Forest Mann suspended Sierra for three days
for promoting the anarchy club.
told Sierra she could not wear T-shirts with anarchy symbols and handwritten
messages such as "When I saw the dead and dying Afghani children on TV, I
felt a newly recovered sense of national security. God Bless America."
Tuesday November 6, 2001
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