Britain and US ‘complicit in war crimes by Ethiopian military’

The British and US governments are complicit in war crimes and crimes against humanity committed by the Ethiopian army in the Ogaden region of the Horn of Africa, a human rights group has claimed.

A report by Human Rights Watch details allegations of rape, torture and public execution carried out by Ethiopian soldiers against civilians in the predominantly Somali Ogaden area, where Ethiopia is fighting a fierce counter-insurgency campaign. The battles intensified last year after an attack by rebels of the Ogaden National Liberation Front (ONLF) on a Chinese-run oil plant in the town of Obole. The ONLF killed more than 70 civilians, including nine Chinese.

In response, Ethiopia stepped up its military crackdown in the eastern province, referred to by some ethnic Somali Muslims as Western Somalia. Witnesses say Ethiopian forces have burnt dozens of villages to the ground – a claim apparently confirmed by satellite images released by the American Association for the Advancement of Science.

According to Human Rights Watch, people accused of aiding the ONLF have executed, often in public, while hundreds more have been detained in military barracks and tortured.

“The Ethiopian army’s response to the rebels has been to viciously attack civilians in Ogaden,” said the group’s spokeswoman, Georgette Gagnon. “These atrocities amount to war crimes and crimes against humanity.”

Ethiopia’s Prime Minister, Meles Zenawi, was once held up as a poster boy for African governance, taking a prominent role in Tony Blair’s Commission for Africa. But since 2005, he has claimed victory in a flawed election and clamped down on political opposition. Up to 200 people protesting against the result were killed by security forces and 100 were charged with treason.

Despite claims of authoritarianism and war crimes in both Ogaden and neighbouring Somalia, British aid for Ethiopia has more than doubled since 2005 to £130m. The US has also increased its support for the army, which it sees as a strong regional ally in the “war on terror”.

Read moreBritain and US ‘complicit in war crimes by Ethiopian military’

The prison industry in the United States: big business or a new form of slavery?

Human rights organizations, as well as political and social ones, are condemning what they are calling a new form of inhumane exploitation in the United States, where they say a prison population of up to 2 million – mostly Black and Hispanic – are working for various industries for a pittance. For the tycoons who have invested in the prison industry, it has been like finding a pot of gold. They don’t have to worry about strikes or paying unemployment insurance, vacations or comp time. All of their workers are full-time, and never arrive late or are absent because of family problems; moreover, if they don’t like the pay of 25 cents an hour and refuse to work, they are locked up in isolation cells.

There are approximately 2 million inmates in state, federal and private prisons throughout the country. According to California Prison Focus, “no other society in human history has imprisoned so many of its own citizens.” The figures show that the United States has locked up more people than any other country: a half million more than China, which has a population five times greater than the U.S. Statistics reveal that the United States holds 25% of the world’s prison population, but only 5% of the world’s people. From less than 300,000 inmates in 1972, the jail population grew to 2 million by the year 2000. In 1990 it was one million. Ten years ago there were only five private prisons in the country, with a population of 2,000 inmates; now, there are 100, with 62,000 inmates. It is expected that by the coming decade, the number will hit 360,000, according to reports.

What has happened over the last 10 years? Why are there so many prisoners?

“The private contracting of prisoners for work fosters incentives to lock people up. Prisons depend on this income. Corporate stockholders who make money off prisoners’ work lobby for longer sentences, in order to expand their workforce. The system feeds itself,” says a study by the Progressive Labor Party, which accuses the prison industry of being “an imitation of Nazi Germany with respect to forced slave labor and concentration camps.”

The prison industry complex is one of the fastest-growing industries in the United States and its investors are on Wall Street. “This multimillion-dollar industry has its own trade exhibitions, conventions, websites, and mail-order/Internet catalogs. It also has direct advertising campaigns, architecture companies, construction companies, investment houses on Wall Street, plumbing supply companies, food supply companies, armed security, and padded cells in a large variety of colors.”

Read moreThe prison industry in the United States: big business or a new form of slavery?

Militants attack Afghan prison, free hundreds of inmates

KANDAHAR, Afghanistan – Taliban militants staged a brazen bomb and rocket attack on the main prison in southern Afghanistan today, blowing down the gate and helping hundreds of suspected insurgents flee, officials said. Many police officers were reported killed.

The complex attack included a truck bombing at the main gate, a suicide bomber who struck a back wall and rockets fired from outside, setting of a series of explosions that rattled Kandahar, the country’s second biggest city.

A Taliban spokesman, Qari Yousef Ahmadi, said 30 insurgents on motorbikes and two suicide bombers attacked Sarposa Prison and freed about 400 Taliban members.

Abdul Qabir, chief of the Sarposa Prison, also said hundreds of prisoners escaped, but did not provide an exact figure. He said some inmates stayed at the jail, which also held criminals.

Wali Karzai, the brother of President Hamid Karzai who is president of Kandahar’s provincial council, said the prison held about 350 suspected Taliban fighters.

He said “all” the prisoners escaped, but also had no specific number. “There is no one left,” he said.

Kandahar was the Taliban’s former stronghold and its province has been the scene of fierce fighting the past two years between insurgents and NATO troops, primarily from Canada and the United States.

The prison attack came just a few hours after Defense Secretary Robert Gates told his counterparts in Europe that NATO members need to bolster their military effort in Afghanistan, where violence has been escalating.

Dramatizing his report, Gates said that for the first time, American and allied combat deaths in Afghanistan last month had exceeded the toll in Iraq.

Qabir, the prison warden, said the assault began when a tanker truck full of explosives detonated at the prison’s main entrance, wrecking the gate and a police post, killing all the officers inside. He couldn’t say how many police were killed.

Read moreMilitants attack Afghan prison, free hundreds of inmates

French Government decides to censor the Internet

Keep your Égalité and Fraternité but shove your Liberté!

THE FRENCH GOVERNMENT has apparently decided that it doesn’t much like being democratic, and that it would rather like to censor the Internet instead.

Not content with simply limiting itself to blocking despicable child sex abuse, a move three major ISPs in the US also agreed to today, the French government feels it necessary to go a radical step further and decide for its citizens whether or not they can view content it considers inappropriately racist and or linked to terrorism.

In fact, worse still is that any site is now game for a French blockade, as Sarkozy’s government is inviting people to send in huge long lists of sites which offend their delicate sensibilities. The French government, which will purportedly be able to receive complaints from Internet users in real time, will be able to add sites to a so called “black list”, which it will then force national ISPs to block.

Read moreFrench Government decides to censor the Internet

Voting for John McCain, One of the ‘Worst Decisions’ in History

McCain: Guantanamo Ruling One of the ‘Worst Decisions’ in History

John McCain said Friday that the Supreme Court ruling on Guantanamo Bay detainees is “one of the worst decisions in the history of this country.”

The presumptive GOP nominee said the decision, a 5-4 ruling Thursday that determined Guantanamo detainees have the right to seek release in civilian courts, would lead to a wave of frivolous challenges.

“We are now going to have the courts flooded with so-called … habeas corpus suits against the government, whether it be about the diet, whether it be about the reading material. And we are going to be bollixed up in a way that is terribly unfortunate because we need to go ahead and adjudicate these cases,” he said at a town hall meeting in New Jersey.

McCain said he has worked hard to ensure the U.S. military does not torture prisoners but that the detainees at Guantanamo are still “enemy combatants.”

(Obviously not hard enough. And what would happen if he would be the next hard working President of the U.S.? Please do not contemplate that before you go to sleep! – The Infinite Unknown)

Read moreVoting for John McCain, One of the ‘Worst Decisions’ in History

Irish EU vote lost, officials say

Counters checking votes

European leaders said they had no “plan B” if the treaty was rejected

Substantial vote tallies across Ireland show the European Union Lisbon reform treaty has been rejected, Irish Justice Minister Dermot Ahern has said.

European Commission head Jose Manuel Barroso said all indications were that Ireland had indeed rejected the treaty.

He called for other states to continue their ratification processes and said a solution should be sought.

The treaty must be ratified by all 27 members. Only Ireland has held a public vote on it.

With results in from 39 of 43 constituencies, the No campaign was ahead by 53.6% to 46.4%, state broadcaster RTE reported.

Mr Ahern was the first senior figure from the Irish government to admit that it looked like the treaty had failed.

“It looks like this will be a No vote,” Mr Ahern said on live television. “At the end of the day, for a myriad of reasons, the people have spoken.”

Obviously it’s disappointing. It’s quite clear there’s a very substantial No vote
Dermot Ahern, Justice Minister

He said it looked like other EU countries would ratify the treaty, so an Irish No vote would leave the EU in “uncharted waters”.

Mr Barroso said he had spoken to Irish Prime Minister Brian Cowen and agreed with him that this was not a vote against the EU.

“Ireland remains committed to a strong Europe,” he said.

“Ratifications should continue to take their course.”

Mr Barroso said EU leaders would have to decide at a summit next week how to proceed.

The people of Ireland have shown enormous courage and wisdom in analysing the facts presented to them and making the decision they have
Declan Ganley, Libertas

However, the BBC’s Oana Lungescu in Brussels says the third failed referendum in three years on the EU’s reform plans is bound to undermine the bloc’s public legitimacy and dent its confidence when it faces other big players on the world stage.

France and Germany quickly issued a joint statement expressing regret over the Irish result.

European leaders earlier said they had no “plan B” for how to proceed if Ireland’s electorate voted No.

Declan Ganley of the anti-treaty lobby group Libertas said that if the No vote had indeed triumphed that it was “a great day for Ireland”.

“The people of Ireland have shown enormous courage and wisdom in analysing the facts presented to them andmaking the decision they have,” Mr Ganley said.

Read moreIrish EU vote lost, officials say

Michael Reagan, son of Ronald Reagan, calls for murder of Truth Activist Mark Dice!!!

Talk show host Michael Reagan calls for murder of anti-war activist
(San Diego, CA) Radio talk show host Michael Reagan is calling for the murder of political activist, Mark Dice, after hearing that Dice is mailing letters and DVDs to troops in Iraq. Reagan wants to pay for the bullets.


Source: You Tube

Transcript of Reagan’s statements: “Excuse me folks, I’m going to say this. We ought to find the people who are doing this, take them out and shoot them. Really. You take them out, they are traitors to this country, and shoot them. You have a problem with that? Deal with it. You shoot them. You call them traitors, that’s what they are, and you shoot them dead. I’ll pay for the bullets.” Reagan adds, “How about you take Mark Dice out and put him in the middle of a firing range. Tie him to a post, don’t blindfold him, let it rip and have some fun with Mark Dice.” Dice is demanding that Reagan be fired immediately. “Calling for the murder of someone because you disagree with their political stance is absolutely unacceptable, un American, and possibly illegal,” says Dice. Dice has filed a report with the FBI and is considering legal action against Reagan. Dice’s organization, The Resistance, has launched a campaign to send documentary films and declassified documents to U.S. troops who are stationed in Iraq to inform them that the 9/11 attacks were aided by elements within the U.S. government.

Contact:

Mark@TheResistanceManifesto.com

Contact Michael Reagan’s Boss

703-302-1000

His death threats were aired Tuesday, June 10th during the second hour.

Email the FCC and let them know.

fccinfo@fcc.go

Michael Reagan’s solution for the Middle East.

Michael Reagan, son of Ronald Reagan:
“When will there be peace in the Middle East. I’ll tell you when there will be peace in the Middle East.
There will be peace when everybody in the Middle East is dead.”

“…So what’s wrong with killing the mothers and the babies?”

Michael Reagan–presidential son and top-rated talk show host–shares his sick ideas on how to solve trouble in the Middle East on 8/15/2006. First he advocates killing babies by inserting “a grenade up their butts,” then he claims we will achieve peace “when everybody in the Middle East is dead.”


Source: You Tube

Israeli hawks pushing for strikes on Iran

JERUSALEM – Six months ago, after American intelligence agencies declared that Iran had shelved its nuclear-weapons program, the chances of a U.S. or Israeli military strike on the Islamic Republic before President Bush left office seemed remote.

Now, thanks to persistent pressure from Israeli hawks and newly stated concerns by the International Atomic Energy Agency, the idea of a targeted strike meant to cripple Iran’s nuclear program is getting a new hearing.

As Bush travels across Europe to gain support for possible new sanctions against Iran, Israeli leaders have been working to lay the psychological foundation for a possible military strike if diplomacy falters.

In public threats and private briefings with American decision-makers, Israeli officials have been making the case that a military strike may be the only way to thwart Iran’s nuclear ambitions.

“Temperatures are rising,” said Emily Landau, an Iran specialist at the Institute for National Security Studies, an independent Israeli research center.

Bush and Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert have met twice in recent weeks for extended talks on Iran. America’s intelligence chief, Mike McConnell, has traveled to Israel for private briefings, and Israeli Transportation Minister Shaul Mofaz publicly declared that a military strike on Iran may be “unavoidable.”

In Germany on Wednesday, Bush said that “all options are on the table” if Iran doesn’t abandon its uranium enrichment programs.

Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad greeted Bush’s initiative by mocking the latest international efforts.

Read moreIsraeli hawks pushing for strikes on Iran

How Iran Has Bush Over a Barrel


An aircraft of Iran’s elite Revolutionary Guards flying over an oil tanker in the Persian Gulf. AFP / Getty

If wasn’t clear before it should be now: the Bush Administration can’t afford to attack Iran. With gas already at $4 a gallon and rising almost every day, Iran figuratively and literally has the United States over a barrel. As much as the Administration is tempted, it is not about to test Iran’s promise to “explode” the Middle East if it is attacked.

The Iranians haven’t been shy about making clear what’s at stake. If the U.S. or Israel so much as drops a bomb on one of its reactors or its military training camps, Iran will shut down Gulf oil exports by launching a barrage of Chinese Silkworm missiles on tankers in the Strait of Hormuz and Arab oil facilities. In the worst case scenario, seventeen million barrels of oil would come off world markets.

One oil speculator told me that oil would hit $200 a barrel within minutes. But Iran’s official news agency, Fars, puts it at $300 a barrel. I asked him if Iran is right, what does that mean?

“Four-dollar-a-gallon of gasoline only reflects $100 oil because the refiners’ margins are squeezed,” he said. “At $300, you have $12 a gallon of gasoline and riots in Newark, Los Angeles, Harlem, Oakland, Cleveland, Detroit, Dallas.”

Read moreHow Iran Has Bush Over a Barrel