22 September 2005

george galloway does chicago ..... 

“I don’t believe that Mr. Bush is a Christian.
Christians believe in the prophets - peace be upon them.
Bush believes in profits & how to get a piece of them.”

What a pity we don’t have more politicians like George Galloway.

Listen to George’s speech.

George Galloway

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21 September 2005

sleepers awake ..... 

"The scenes from the stricken city almost defy belief. Many, many thousands of people left to die in what is the richest, most powerful country on Earth. This obscenity is as far from a natural disaster as George Bush and the US elite are from the suffering masses of New Orleans. The images of Bush luxuriating at his ranch and of his secretary of state shopping for $7,000 shoes while disaster swamped the US Gulf Coast will haunt this administration.

In the most terrible way imaginable they show to the whole world that it is not only the lives of people in Baghdad, Fallujah and Palestine that Bush holds cheap. It is also his own citizens: the black and poor people left behind with no food, water or shelter. This is not simply manslaughter through incompetence, though the White House's incompetence abounds. It is murder - for Bush was warned four years ago of the threat to New Orleans, as surely as he was warned of the disaster that would come of his war on Iraq.

His is the America of Halliburton, the M-16 rifle, the cluster bomb, the gated communities of the rich and of the billionaires he grew up with in Texas. There is another America. It is the land of the poor of Louisiana; it is the land of the young men and women economically conscripted into the military. It is the land of the glorious multiethnic mix that was New Orleans, it is the land of Malcolm X, Martin Luther King and of great struggles for justice."

Galloway's Frankness Invigorates, Shocks Americans

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20 September 2005

giving democracy a bad name ..... 

Referring to the activities of the “coalition of the willing” in Afghanistan & Iraq, Sentator Hill said last Sunday: “It’s great to see Australia & Britain serving alongside each other, working for freedom & democracy the way they were doing 65 years ago.”

As everyone knows, the edgy Senator can get a little carried away at times.

The US & its junior partners have supposedly created new “democracies” in Afghanistan & Iraq, but their efforts arguably serve only to give democracy a bad name.

Whilst both countries boast some elements essential to representative democracies, such as elected officials & constitutions, they remain in the grip of grinding poverty, insurgencies & entrenched militia forces that make the exercise of democracy all but impossible.

And the foreign forces still occupying both countries, allegedly engaged in supporting their fledgling institutions & defeating the insurgents, seem more adept at terrorizing the civilian populaces, whilst propping-up what are, in essence, puppet regimes of the US; still answerable to US ambassadors on most issues.

In keeping with Senator Hill’s sense of déjà vu & the high-minded rhetoric regularly served-up by the members of the “coalition of the willing”, that same day the people of Afghanistan headed off to their country’s 1st parliamentary election in 40 years, as part of the “democratic” process being imposed on their country.

Whilst there are undoubtedly many Afghans who hope that the elections will empower them to end their troubles, the fear is that the elections will probably be as undemocratic in practice as every other institution inflicted on them thus far.

On the eve of last Sunday’s parliamentary elections, Foreign Policy In Focus published a far less sanguine report on the outlook for democracy in Afghanistan.

Afghanistan’s Parliamentary Elections

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the voice of rebellious lambs ..... 

Fresh in the wake of the July terrorist attacks in London, a group of Church of England bishops today issued a report criticising American foreign policy, the US war on terror & the misuse of biblical texts by some Christian groups to shape American thinking & to support the Bush administration’s political agenda in the Middle East.

The report accuses the US of using illegitimate & dangerous rhetoric, describing some millennialist views as “deeply worrying & illegitimate”. The report says that: “the book of Revelation, far from being a justification for American expansionism, is in fact a fierce critique of the imperial enterprise”.

The outspoken 100-page report was issued by the Church, having been drawn-up by a working party of four diocesan bishops for the Church's Executive Archbishops' Council to explore ways to counter terrorism in the post 9/11 world.

Its authors - the Bishops of Oxford, Coventry, Worcester & Bath & Wells - received advice & guidance from defence specialists & military experts in the drafting of their work.

The report not only argues that churches have a vital role to play in combating the threat of terrorism & promoting Christian principles in a world characterised by power & violence, but that respect for human dignity should be an underlying moral principle for relationships between states just as much as between individuals.

"It is a moral principle that is expressed through the establishment of international law & its observance. So international order is to be built not on brute power & fear but on law that is ultimately grounded in the divine wisdom. When national interest is interpreted in a narrow or short-term way that excludes or ignores the flourishing of other communities, this is incompatible with a proper understanding of what is in our interest."

The report calls for the United Nations to be strengthened as the legitimate authority for all military intervention & opposes democracy being imposed on any other country by force, saying it must be adopted by a nation in culturally appropriate ways. It describes talk of a "war on terrorism" as a piece of dangerous rhetoric & warns of the danger of governments such as Britain imposing laws that seek to restrict hard won civil liberties.

Countering Terrorism: Power, Violence & Democracy Post 911

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what a sweet scam ..... 

“More however, could have been achieved. And there has been understandable disappointment & criticism at the lack of language on disarmament & non-proliferation, particularly given the risk of proliferation of weapons of mass destruction to terrorists.”

So opined our little johnnie in his latest piece of hypocritical puffery at the UN.

Indeed, how could his words amount to anything-else, when georgie-porgie, his best mate, a sociopath, war criminal & terrorist, is also leader of the world’s largest weapons proliferating country?

So says the Congressional Research Service in its August 29 report - Conventional Weapons Transfers To Developing Nations.

Highlights include:

· gobal arms sales reached US$37 billion in 2004
· the US booked more than US$12.4 billion in weapons contracts; more than double the amount booked by the next largest proliferator, Russia;
· US government agencies, such as the Departments of Defense, State & Commerce, are all involved in facilitating & financing these contracts;
· hypocritically posturing itself as the world’s saviour in its war on terror, the US has stepped-up its long standing policy of arming, training & aiding many of the world’s most oppressive regimes, including Uzbekistan & Pakistan;
· US weapons & training are continuously being used by governments to mount human rights abuses against civilians in the Philippines, Columbia, Indonesia, the Sudan & elsewhere;
· in 2003, the US transferred weaponry to 20 of the 25 countries involved in ‘active’ conflicts, including US$2.7 billion to countries whose governments were deemed by the US State Department to be either ‘undemocratic’ or had records of major human rights abuses.

The great marketer of ‘freedom & democracy’ is a warfare state, having sold more than US$177 billion in arms over the last decade, including US$5.7 billion to countries struggling with debt & poverty in the developing world.

And what a sweet scam it is.

On the one hand, the likes of Northrop, Boeing & Bell, facilitated by the US government, expedite & profit from war, misery & destruction whilst, on the other, the likes of Bechtel & Halliburton, also facilitated by the US government, profit from the continuous need to reconstruct what has been destroyed.

But only a cold-blooded buffoon like John Howard would understate & thereby defend the obvious obscenity in all this, whilst conspiring to conceal our government’s complicity in the mass mortality of children in Iraq & Afghanistan – a direct consequence of that scam.

The day before the Congressional Research Service published its report, former Associate Professor of Biochemistry, Dr Gideon Polya, highlighted the fact that the Australian government doesn’t know & doesn’t want to know how many civilians have perished in the middle east, as a direct consequence of the war of aggression mounted by the ‘coalition of the willing’.

To quote from Dr Polya’s talk Australian Complicity In Iraq Mass Mortality

“Jihadist violence has taken roughly about 5,000 Western civilian lives over the last 20 years, with most of the victims dying on 9/11 (about 3,000) & the remainder including murdered Israeli civilians & the victims of atrocities such as Madrid, Lockerbie & Bali.

However, this jihadist violence has had immensely bloodier consequences through the hysterically & dishonestly promoted War on Terror that has been associated with post-invasion avoidable deaths in Iraq & Afghanistan alone that total 1.6 million.

The War on Terror has substantially helped to produce a post-9/11 extra profit for the US military-industrial complex of about $US500 billion. The annual world death toll from car accidents & smoking-related causes is about 1 million & 5 million respectively. One can see why there is no War on Cars, nor a War on Cigarettes.”

And this obscenity is made all the more sickening by the prime preanster ‘talking-up’ his government’s decision to double our nation’s foreign aid contributions to A$4 billion by 2010, in the full knowledge that it will be little more than half of what is actually required to meet our commitment to the Millennium Goals & only half of what he promised to provide 5 years ago.

Tragically, it would appear that, when it comes to terrorism, few notice the elephant in the room.

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19 September 2005

liar, liar ..... 

‘If George Bush had encountered the same fate as Jim Carrey’s character in the movie Liar Liar, & had been rendered incapable of lying, America would not have been subjected to thirty minutes of manipulative propaganda on 9/15.

Compelled to tell the truth, Bush’s oration would have captured the reality of the situation in New Orleans & of life for the poor & working class in an America dominated by a wealthy aristocracy.’

Liar, Liar

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