I must have missed this in June, but if it's already been posted, it is still such an important clip that I'll post it again anyway. This is a clip from the 60 Minutes interview with Ben Bernanke. No one can ever say again that the Fed doesn't print money. Washington's Blog: Why Consolidation in the Banking Industry Threatens Our Economy.
Al Jazeera has obtained exclusive footage of a Colombian contract killer detailing an alleged $25 million plot to kill Hugo Chavez, the Venezuelan president. Geovanny Velasquez Zambrano says the money was offered by Manuel Rosales, one of Chavez's main political rivals, during a secret meeting in 1999. A Colombian paramilitary group took up the offer, according to Zambrano. Chavez has long said there is a plot by Colombia to kill him, and relations between the two countries are tense.
Newly declassified information has revealed some concerning activity on the part of the FBI:
A fast-growing FBI data-mining system billed as a tool for hunting terrorists is being used in hacker and domestic criminal investigations, and now contains tens of thousands of records from private corporate databases, including car-rental companies, large hotel chains and at least one national department store...
In other words, the FBI is keeping track of a lot of information about private citizens and obtaining it without warrants. Moreover, the Bureau wants to quadruple the staff of the tracking program to allow them to better keep an eye on all the terrorists this is supposedly going to catch.
Iran's nuclear chief confirms that the newly-announced under-construction uranium enrichment facility will be in full compliance with the country's treaty obligations under the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT). "At present, Iran is constructing this facility in compliance with of all aspects, including passive defense," Ali-Akbar Salehi said. "As with Iran's other nuclear facilities, the activities of the facility will be within the framework of the IAEA regulations." Iran's announcement of the new plant has been seized upon by a number of Western leaders slamming the country of "deception" in its nuclear program. The US and a number of its allies have accused Iran of seeking nuclear weapons, but Iran has repeatedly rejected the charges. AntiWar: Is Second Facility Really 'Provocative' or a Hedge Against Attack? Al Jazeera: Iran denies violating IAEA rules. Information Clearing House: President Ahmadinejad: An Interview With Katie Couric -VIDEO.
Caption: A protestor cries from tear gas fired on marchers by riot police during an unpermitted march against the G-20 Summit on September 24, 2009 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Marchers gathered in neighborhoods several miles from Pittsburgh's downtown but were dispersed by police bearing tear gas and amplification machines. Dignitaries begin arriving for the G-20 Summit today while authorities vow to prevent expected protests from disrupting the meeting. The People's Voice: G-20 In, G-8 Out. Mostly Water: Anti-G20 Resistance in Pittsburgh [Video].
Cautions 'Overwhelming Firepower' Won't Win War. Though it seems hard to imagine given how much violence in Afghanistan has already risen over the course of the year, top US commander General Stanley McChrystal insists that the situation is still getting worse, and the spread of violence is “more than I would have gathered.” AntiWar: 5 US troops killed as debate grows over Afghan war.
The Palestinian Ministry of Health in Gaza said on Friday that eight months after the war, the disastrous consequences of the three-week conflict continue to affect the lives of the people of Gaza. According to Dr. Mowaiya Hassanen, an official in the ministry, Israel's use of internationally banned weapons, including white phosphorus and depleted uranium, has resulted in a series of abnormalities in newborn babies in Gaza, ranging from heart defects to brain abnormalities.
A local authority in Israel has announced that it is establishing a special team of youth counsellors and psychologists whose job it will be to identify young Jewish women who are dating Arab men and “rescue” them. The move by the municipality of Petah Tikva, a city close to Tel Aviv, is the latest in a series of separate – and little discussed – initiatives from official bodies, rabbis, private organizations and groups of Israeli residents to try to prevent interracial dating and marriage.
The G-20 will announce Friday that "the G-20 will be the permanent council for international economic cooperation," replacing the G-8, a senior Obama administration official said. "It's a reflection of the world economy today and the players that make it up," the official said. President Obama took the lead in initiating this after the G-8 summit in L'Aquila, Italy. The G-8 nations are the United States, Canada, France, Germany, Italy, the United Kingdom, Russia and Japan. You Tube: Armored Police Seize University of Pittsburgh Campus, Attack Students, Then Claim They Were Stopping Anarchists @ G20 + Pittsburgh Police sound cannon Weapons Tear Gas At G20 Summit. ChiMericana: G20 Pittsburgh - LRAD sound cannon used against protesters: BREAKING NEWS: the LRAD sound cannon is a non-lethal crowd control device that's been known to DAMAGE THE MIDDLE EAR so powerful is the sound blast. You basically can't stand up in the line of this thing. It goes off you go down. Why am I mentioning this? Well, report has it that the Police (with support from the U.S. Army) are using LRADs on a permitless Peaceful Protest on the street at the G20 meeting in Pittsburgh -- like since when do you need a permit to peacefully protest? This is happening right now on your street in America. Martial Law is in effect across the USA and this is the most visceral sign to date. Oh, they have the MICROWAVE WEAPONS also(!) Oh, and now they've tear-gassed protestors. "I DECLARE THIS TO BE AN UNLAWFUL ASSEMBLY. YOU MUST LEAVE THIS VICINITY IMMEDIATELY. IF YOU DO NOT LEAVE THIS VICINITY YOU WILL BE ARRESTED." announcement on the streets.
An arrest that was made occurred on a side street near Baum Ave & S Millvale Ave. The "Group of 20" is meeting today and tomorrow in Pittsburgh. People have been demonstrating to counter the G20, a group of the richest, most powerful people from the richest, most powerful countries who make decisions which impact all of us. The past few times they have met they decided to bail out big banks, including the biggest, baddest bank of them all, the International Monetary Fund (IMF), which does nothing to help people. In addition, G20-style globalization policies have harmed the environment and threatened democracy everywhere.
On Wednesday, the Justice Department said that President Obama may continue to hold “terror suspects” indefinitely and without judicial review based on the congressional Authorization to Use Military Force that came in the wake of the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks on New York and Washington—the same rationale used by Obama’s predecessor, George W. Bush. The move aims to institutionalize the previous administration’s assault on habeas corpus—the bedrock principle of democratic rights and the civil liberties laid down in the US Constitution’s Bill of Rights.
Its time for you to help build the momentum to stop the war. Get the full DVD. Host a screening with neighbors.
Congress Should Hold Hearings on Alternatives to Major Escalation. Embedded in General Stanley McChrystal's classified assessment of the war in Afghanistan is his conclusion that a successful counterinsurgency strategy will require 500,000 troops over five years. This bombshell was dropped by NBC reporter Andrea Mitchell on MSNBC's Morning Joe on Wednesday:
The numbers are really pretty horrifying. What they say, embedded in this report by McChrystal, is they would need 500,000 troops - boots on the ground - and five years to do the job. No one expects that the Afghan Army could step up to that. Are we gonna put even half that of U.S. troops there, and NATO forces? No way. [Morning Joe, September 23, 2009]
Mitchell got the figure from an independent source. It was not revealed in the redacted version of the once classified report released by the Pentagon earlier this week. McChrystal has warned the administration that without an infusion of more troops the eight-year war in Afghanistan "will likely result in failure." Zimbio: Taliban is Winning in Afghanistan: Gen. McChrystal TomDispatch / Uruknet: How to Trap a President in a Losing War.
The Danish Military tries to stop elite soldier's autobiography, and fail. Then they try to stir up a controversy by leaking a "discovered" Arabic translation to the press. A translated version into Arabic of a controversial book about Danish commandos, appears to have been collated by the military. Denmark was awash yesterday with reports of an Arabic translation of a controversial book about Danish commandos that the defence forces have unsuccessfully attempted to win an injunction against. The translation, however, was later shown by the tabloid B.T. to be an automatic, on-line translation of the book and largely unreadable.
Americans on Health Care (and Afghanistan)
Norway is no ethical leader – its pension fund, oil policy, environmental record and arms exports give the lie to its image. Can the European left look to Norway to push the world's powerful nations to act morally abroad? A Labour/socialist left coalition government is celebrating electoral victory there, the first time an incumbent government has won re-election in 40 years. Four years ago, it promised to act as a "peace nation" to support a "more democratic world order" and human rights. Yet socialist-led Norway – still living on its benign image abroad – has instead become the home of four dirty little secrets.
The Dalai Lama, left, stands on the balcony of the Lorraine Motel Wednesday, Sept. 23, 2009, in Memphis, Tenn., and looks up at the location pointed out by Rev. Benjamin Hooks, right, where the bullet was fired that killed Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. in 1968. The Dalai Lama is in Memphis to accept the 2009 International Freedom Award from the National Civil Rights Museum.
Through declassified documents, Wired.com has revealed that “a fast-growing FBI data-mining system billed as a tool for hunting terrorists (sic) is being used in hacker and domestic criminal investigations, and now contains tens of thousands of records from private corporate databases, including car-rental companies, large hotel chains and at least one national department store.”
Swedish Journalist, Donald BostrÖm, who published the organ harvest article, accusing Israel of illegal removing the organs of Palestinians killed by the Israel army, stated during a Wednesday evening press conference in Algeria, that Israel illegally harvested body parts of more than 1000 Palestinians.
Eight children between the ages of 10 and 17 were arrested and detained by Israeli soldiers during military raids Monday night and Tuesday morning in the northern West Bank cities Nablus and Qalqilia. Defence for Children International (DCI) Palestine has released a statement that the number of children detained in Israeli jails and temporary Israeli army detention centres this year has risen by 17.5 percent compared with 2008. "The average number of Palestinian children held in Israeli detention in 2009 remains high, at 375 per month compared with an average of 319 in 2008," says DCI.
Following yesterday’s comparatively brief speech by Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, today belonged firmly to the anti-Iran crowd, with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu getting the ball rolling on what was a day of calls for harsh action against the nation.
The truth is readily available for anyone who takes the time to really look.
The death toll from a US drone strike in Pakistan's troubled northwestern tribal Waziristan region has risen to ten after tribesmen pulled more bodies from debris. "Ten dead bodies were recovered from the debris of the house and two militants were wounded in the attack," a regional security official told AFP on condition of anonymity. The death toll is expected to rise as some of the injured were said to be in critical condition.
The strike from CIA-operated spy drones was the fourth this month in North Waziristan region. Since August 2008, nearly 60 such attacks by US spy planes have killed more than 550 people in the volatile region. Earlier reports said four people were killed in the latest lethal incident which took place around five kilometers (three miles) northwest of Miransha in the North Waziristan tribal district on Thursday night. The drone planes continued low-altitude flights in several towns of Waziristan region over the past weeks. The air strikes, which are common in Pakistan, allegedly target pro-Taliban militants in the tribal belt bordering Afghanistan. AntiWar: Obama May Escalate Pakistan Drone Strikes.
The sun is setting on the US dollar as the ultra-loose monetary policy of the US Federal Reserve forces China and the vibrant economies of the emerging world to forge a new global currency order, according to a new report by HSBC.
Canadians are bullish on giving government officials permission to restrict personal freedoms in a flu pandemic, with half of those surveyed agreeing that violation of a quarantine order would be tantamount to manslaughter. As well, 90% of Canadians surveyed for a research report in pandemic ethics believe doctors and nurses have an obligation to report to work during a pandemic, provided safety precautions are in place. Almost half — 48% — say that health care workers who do not show up for work without a legitimate excuse should be fired or lose their professional licenses.
Those living in the United States tend to be more conservative and prefer to stick close to home, said Samantha McAra, senior research manager with Ipsos Reid, a Canadian public opinion research firm that studied how young adult North Americans differ on the two sides of the 49th Parallel.
Scientists see no temperature increase (on average) in the oceans or on the surface of the Earth over the last decade. That hasn't stopped an activist group from infiltrating high schools with the panicky message that we are on the verge of a "planetary emergency" due to global warming.
The US and its European allies have exploited this week’s UN session to threaten tough new sanctions against Iran ahead of a meeting on October 1 between the five permanent members of the UN Security Council plus Germany (P5+1) and Tehran over its nuclear programs. US President Barack Obama focussed attention on Iran by yesterday pushing a resolution through the UN Security Council on nuclear non-proliferation. While non-binding and largely a compilation of previous measures, Washington will undoubtedly use the resolution to justify future actions against Iran and North Korea. Financial Times: China hostile to Iran sanctions.
WMR has obtained additional details on Business International Corporation (BIC), the CIA front company where President Obama spent a year working after graduating from Columbia University in 1983. Through its contacts with leading liberals around the world, BIC sought to recruit those on the left as CIA agents and assets.
The database is kept at the FBI's National Security Branch Analysis Center (NSAC) near Washington, according to the documents acquired under a freedom of information request by US magazine Wired. Data has been drawn from a wide variety of sources, including records of international travel, hotel bookings, car rentals, department store transactions and active aircraft pilots. The FBI data mining system brings the US government closer than ever to implementing the total information awareness system proposed by the Pentagon after the September 11 attacks, reports said.
Over the past week U.S. newspapers and television networks have been abuzz with reports that Washington and its NATO allies are planning an unprecedented increase of troops for the war in Afghanistan, even in addition to the 17,000 new American and several thousand NATO forces that have been committed to the war so far this year.
Embedded in General Stanley McChrystal's classified assessment of the war in Afghanistan is his conclusion that a successful counterinsurgency strategy will require 500,000 troops over five years. This bombshell was dropped by NBC reporter Andrea Mitchell on MSNBC's Morning Joe on Wednesday: "The numbers are really pretty horrifying. What they say, embedded in this report by McChrystal, is they would need 500,000 troops - boots on the ground - and five years to do the job. No one expects that the Afghan Army could step up to that. Are we gonna put even half that of U.S. troops there, and NATO forces? No way." [Morning Joe, September 23, 2009]
A 'false flag' murder to demonize the anti-government movement? Whether it is or not, the spin is out in full force. This happened on Sept. 12 but the media is just now picking up on it. Just in time for the G20.
Tuesday’s meeting in New York between Barack Obama, Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu and Palestinian Authority (PA) President Mahmoud Abbas was widely regarded as little more than a photo opportunity before it began, as well as something of a political embarrassment for the US president. It was both these things. But it also confirmed the degree to which the Obama administration is prepared to back Netanyahu’s settlement construction programme on the West Bank and East Jerusalem and to dictate terms to the Palestinians. Redress/TPV: The drama and the farce: Binyamin Netanyahu humiliates Barack Obama.
Canada boycotted a speech by Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad to the UN General Assembly on Wednesday evening, protesting his denial of the Holocaust and verbal attacks on Israel. The Canadian delegation, led by Foreign Affairs Minister Lawrence Cannon, walked out at the start of Ahmadinejad's address. Several other delegations, including lower-level U.S. diplomats, left during the speech. Israel's UN delegation was not present for the speech. Ahmadinejad's address to a half-empty chamber in New York slammed Israel and railed against the West and capitalism. He criticized Israel for staging "barbaric" attacks in the Gaza Strip last year, and he slammed the U.S.-led wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. "It is no longer acceptable that a small minority would dominate the politics, economy and culture of major parts of the world by its complicated networks, and establish a new form of slavery, and harm the reputation of other nations, even European nations and the US, to attain its racist ambitions," he said. Consortium News: What Did Ahmadinejad Really Say? (September 19, 2009) Al Jazeera: Iran hits out at Western 'terror' -VIDEO. RT/You Tube: Ahmadinejad speech at UN -VIDEO. Obama, Ahmadinejad, Gaddafi, Empty Chairs and Two Thomas's.
He tore up a copy of the UN charter in front of startled delegates, accused the security council of being an al-Qaida like terrorist body, called for George Bush and Tony Blair to be put on trial for the Iraq war, demanded $7.7tn in compensation for the ravages of colonialism on Africa, and wondered whether swine flu was a biological weapon created in a military laboratory. At one point, he even demanded to know who was behind the killing of JFK. All in all, a pretty ordinary 100 minutes in the life of the colonel. PressTV: Gadhafi attacks 'terror council' with UN charter. JTA: Gadhafi points finger at Israel over JFK assassination: Speaking Wednesday at the United Nations General Assembly, Gadhafi implied that Israel may have plotted to kill Kennedy in 1963 because he allegedly wanted to launch a probe into its clandestine nuclear program. “Jack Ruby, an Israeli, killed Lee Harvey Oswald,” the Libyan leader was quoted by the translator as saying. “Why did this Israeli kill Harvey? Ruby later died mysteriously. The whole world should know that Kennedy wanted to investigate the actions of the Israeli nuclear reactor in Dimona.”
Arkansas Rep. Mike Ross — a Blue Dog Democrat playing a key role in the health care debate — sold a piece of commercial property in 2007 for substantially more than a county assessment and an independent appraisal say it was worth. The buyer: an Arkansas-based pharmacy chain with a keen interest in how the debate plays out.
Using data collected by three different missions studying the surface of the moon, researchers have their strongest evidence yet of possible signs of water. "When we say 'water on the moon,' we are not talking about lakes, oceans or even puddles," according to Brown University researcher Carle Pieters. "Water on the moon means molecules of water and hydroxyl (hydrogen and oxygen) that interact with molecules of rock and dust specifically in the top millimeters of the moon's surface."
We live in a technologically advanced and interconnected world. Places that were once almost impossible to reach are now accessible by road systems, waterways and airplane rides. Despite the ease with which we can contact people on the other side of the globe -- whether it be through the click of a mouse or a letter in the post -- about 10 percent of the Earth is more than 48 hours away, by way of land travel, from the nearest city [source: O'Neill]. While in recent years it definitely has become easier to reach far away lands, there are many places in the world that remain inaccessible, uninhabited and secluded -- in other words, the most remote spots on Earth. To determine whether a location qualifies as "remote," you should consider the inaccessibility of the place (how difficult it is to reach the spot) and its isolation (the distance from the nearest inhabited location). In terms of inaccessibility, the point farthest from sea is the Eurasian Pole of Inaccessibility, which is located more than 1,553 miles (2,500 kilometers) from any ocean and is located in northern China. The point farthest from land is Point Nemo, which is in the South Pacific, more than 1,553 miles (2,500 kilometers) from any land mass [source: Murrell]. Neither of these locations are inhabited by humans.
On Tuesday, government leaders representing about 100 nations gathered at the United Nations in New York to discuss global warming. The meeting was billed as an attempt to jump-start negotiations in advance of a December summit in Copenhagen at which a global treaty governing greenhouse gas emissions is to be produced. Instead, the New York conference only served to highlight the impossibility of realizing even the most limited environmental reforms in a world order dominated by rival capitalist nation states.
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