Syria says ready in case of US military action

Syrian Foreign Minister Walid Muallem said on Sunday that Damascus was prepared for all scenarios in its worsening relationship with Washington, including the use of US military force.

“A prudent person must make all his calculations, especially when we have to deal with an administration which knows how to strike but does not know how to withdraw,” Muallem told reporters at the end of an Arab summit in Damascus.

He was referring to Iraq where almost 160,000 American troops are stationed five years after invading the country to overthrow president Saddam Hussein. More than 4,000 US soldiers have died since.

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Syrian Foreign Minister Walid Muallem chairs a meeting of Arab Foreign Ministers in Damascus on March 27. (AFP/File/Louai Beshara)

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US gave $300m arms contract to 22-year-old with criminal record

· Old stock sent to Afghan forces battling Taliban
· 40-year-old ammunition had to be destroyed
The Pentagon entrusted a 22-year-old previously arrested for domestic violence and having a forged driving licence to be the main supplier of ammunition to Afghan forces at the height of the battle against the Taliban, it was reported yesterday.

AEY, essentially a one-man operation based in an unmarked office in Miami Beach, Florida, was awarded a contract worth $300m (£150m) to supply the Afghan army and police in January last year. But as the New York Times reported in a lengthy investigation, AEY’s president, Efraim Diversoli, 22, supplied stock that was 40 years old and rotting packing material.

“Much of the ammunition comes from the ageing stockpiles of the old communist bloc, including stockpiles that the state department and Nato have determined to be unreliable and obsolete, and have spent millions of dollars to have destroyed,” the paper said.

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97 percent of US death toll came after ‘Mission Accomplished’

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BAGHDAD (AFP) – The death toll of US soldiers in the five-year Iraq conflict has hit 4,000 in what the US military said Monday was a “tragic” loss of lives after four troops were killed in a Baghdad bombing.

The four soldiers died when their vehicle was hit by a roadside bomb while on patrol late Sunday in southern Baghdad, bringing the overall toll to 4,000, according to an AFP tally based on independent website.

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Over 70,000 deaths, and over 1 million disabilities among American soldiers attributed to Iraq Wars says U.S. government data

(“More than 1,820 tons (3-million, 640 thousand pounds) of radioactive nuclear waste uranium were exploded into Iraq alone in the form of armour piercing rounds and bunker busters, representing the worlds worst man made ecological disaster ever. “)

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Iraq War veterans protest

Iraq War veterans protest as U.S. Republican Presidential campaign seeks to help support corporate media spin about the Iraq War.

According to U.S. media reports, there are well below 5,000 U.S. soldiers who have been killed in Iraq. However, this data appears to be very misleading. Why? Because many tens of thousands of American soldiers have apparently been killed to-date, as a result of being exposed to radiation poisoning from the indiscriminate killing machines of U.S. military weaponry. Ironically, the only Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD) that Americans soldiers have found in Iraq are “Made in America”.

U.S. investigative researchers have discovered an official U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs official, but not well publicized count, of 73,846 U.S. soldiers who have perished as an apparent result of Depleted Uranium based bio-chemical warfare exposure. This exceeds an estimate of 58,000 U.S. soldiers who had been killed in relation to the Vietnam War.

Well over 200,000 American soldiers could be killed by 2010, as a result of the after effects of exposure to U.S. dirty bombs.

Over One million U.S. soldiers have apparently been disabled from Depleted Uranium based biochemical exposure. Over one million Iraqis have also been documented to have been killed.

Read moreOver 70,000 deaths, and over 1 million disabilities among American soldiers attributed to Iraq Wars says U.S. government data

Blackwater ‘Blood Money’ Angers Iraqis

At least two Iraqi families of victims killed by Blackwater security guards in September tell ABC News they have refused compensation offered by the company.

blackwater_ali_excl_080207_ms.jpgThe father of a 9-year-old boy, who says his son was one of the 17 civilians killed when Blackwater guards, escorting a diplomatic convoy, opened fire at Baghdad’s Nisour Square on Sept. 16, says he is trying to file a lawsuit against the company. He told ABCNews.com that Blackwater offered him $20,000 through an Iraqi prosecutor, but he refused the money.

Another Iraqi who lost both his wife and son in the incident says he too has refused the company’s offer of compensation of $20,000 for each victim.

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The Day After the Bombing of Iran

Imagine yourself sitting down transfixed and watching video footage of U.S. bombs hitting Iran. You see children ripped limb from limb, mothers screaming and wailing, people panicked, tortured, traumatized, and killed. Imagine asking yourself at that point: What was I doing these past many months that I thought was more important than preventing this?Now ask yourself today: What am I doing that is more important than ending the ongoing hell of the U.S. occupation of Iraq?

Are you struggling to support your family? So are many, many other people who still find hours and days to commit. While congress members and senators have the gall to tell constituents that opposing Pelosi or Reid and cutting off the funding lies outside their “comfort zone,” citizens are going without sleep, ruining marriages and friendships, losing money, fasting, and risking serious jail time for nonviolent protests. Are those children hit by the bombs living within a “comfort zone”?

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KBR Named In Report On Soldier Illnesses

Dozens of U.S. troops in Iraq fell sick at bases using “unmonitored and potentially unsafe” water supplied by the military and a contractor once owned by Vice President Dick Cheney’s former company, the Pentagon’s internal watchdog says.

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A report obtained by The Associated Press said soldiers experienced skin abscesses, cellulitis, skin infections, diarrhea and other illnesses after using discolored, smelly water for personal hygiene and laundry at five U.S. military sites in Iraq.

The Defense Department’s inspector general’s report, which could be released as early as Monday, found water quality problems between March 2004 and February 2006 at three sites run by contractor KBR Inc., and between January 2004 and December 2006 at two military-operated locations.

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British Teachers Told To Rewrite Iraq Invasion History

Britain’s biggest teachers’ union has accused the Ministry of Defence of breaking the law over a lesson plan drawn up to teach pupils about the Iraq war. The National Union of Teachers claims it breaches the 1996 Education Act, which aims to ensure all political issues are treated in a balanced way.

Teachers will threaten to boycott military involvement in schools at the union’s annual conference next weekend, claiming the lesson plan is a “propaganda” exercise and makes no mention of any civilian casualties as a result of the war.

They believe the instructions, designed for use during classroom discussions in general studies or personal, social and health education (PSE) lessons, are arguably an attempt to rewrite the history of the Iraq invasion just as the world prepares to mark its fifth anniversary.

Steve Sinnott, the general secretary of the NUT, said: “This isn’t an attack on the military – nothing of the sort. I know they’ve done valuable work in establishing peace in some countries. It is an attack on practices that we cannot condone in schools. It is a question of whether you present fair and balanced views or put forward prejudice and propaganda to youngsters.”

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Top Iraq contractor skirts US taxes offshore

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CAYMAN ISLANDS – Kellogg Brown & Root, the nation’s top Iraq war contractor and until last year a subsidiary of Halliburton Corp., has avoided paying hundreds of millions of dollars in federal Medicare and Social Security taxes by hiring workers through shell companies based in this tropical tax haven.More than 21,000 people working for KBR in Iraq – including about 10,500 Americans – are listed as employees of two companies that exist in a computer file on the fourth floor of a building on a palm-studded boulevard here in the Caribbean. Neither company has an office or phone number in the Cayman Islands.

The Defense Department has known since at least 2004 that KBR was avoiding taxes by declaring its American workers as employees of Cayman Islands shell companies, and officials said the move allowed KBR to perform the work more cheaply, saving Defense dollars.

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